A citizen of Bryan recently asked, “What’s up with the stealth police cars in Bryan? Why not make the police car easily identifiable. If I see a car that appears unmarked with flashing lights try to pull me over, I won’t pull over since I cannot verify it’s actually a police car. I think I’d be within my rights since the car isn’t identifying itself as a law enforcement vehicle. Any idiot can buy colored lights and try to impersonate a police car.”
The Press contacted the Bryan Police Department’s Kelley McKethan to learn more about their unmarked units (which should not conduct traffic stops) and “ghost marked” units that may cause confusion when initiating a traffic stop.
Q: How many unmarked cars does Bryan PD use in patrol operations?
A: None We have unmarked cars that Detectives drive but are not used in patrol functions
Q: How many “ghost marked” cars?
A: We have 2 that our K9 utilize.
Q: Are either the ghost marked cars or unmarked involved in initiating traffic stops?
A: Our two K9 Officers do use their vehicles to make traffic stops. Our unmarked vehicles do not make traffic stops.
Q: Advice for citizens unsure if it’s a real officer behind them?
A: If anyone is unsure if it is a real police officer behind them they need to obey all traffic laws. Put on their hazards so the officer knows they have seen them and find a business or well lit area to pull over. In this community they can also call 361-3888 (our non-emergency number) give them the location they are at and what they are driving and ask if they have an officer attempting to pull them over.
Q: What is the purpose of unmarked/ghost marked units?
A: Our K9 Officers are often used in looking for burglars or suspects that have fled the scene of a crime. Although they are still easily seen by the overhead lights and markings, a suspect who is running from police may overlook a unit with ghost markings.