The Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office arrested a New Jersey man Wednesday for impersonating the sheriff to intimidate local contractors.
New Jersey Man Arrested for Impersonating the Sheriff
NEWS RELEASE 20-001 - JANUARY 2, 2020
Detectives were alerted in November 2019 that the suspect attempted to intimidate a sub-contractor involved in a lien against the suspect’s new home being built in Sarasota County, due to lack of payment. The suspect, identified as 51-year-old Todd Gieger, drove to the victim’s home where he asked neighbors for information about the victim. Gieger wore a black bullet proof vest and law enforcement style badge while claiming to be “The Sheriff.” At the time of the incident, Gieger was driving a white Maserati with New Jersey tags. Through continued investigation, detectives determined Gieger called multiple other sub-contractors involved in the lien as well as the construction company, while claiming to be a member of law enforcement. Gieger’s home was being constructed in the city of Sarasota, along Benjamin Franklin Drive.
“In today’s world, it is more crucial than ever for communities to know and trust their law enforcement,” commented Sheriff Tom Knight. “Lucky for us, our residents are smart and in this incident, they knew something wasn’t right. Credit goes to both cognizant witnesses and great detectives for getting this guy off our streets and out of our community.”
Gieger today faces two counts of False Impersonation of Law Enforcement. He was released on $3,000 bond. Citizens are encouraged to always stay aware of their surroundings and if approached by someone who seems suspicious and claims to be an officer or deputy, they should dial 911 immediately. By dialing 911 in Sarasota County, a calltaker will be able to provide verification for the caller.