Catherine Ross, NBC 5 News
Dallas police told NBC DFW Leadarius Johnson is being held at the Dallas County Jail on a charge of impersonating a public servant. After an NBC5 report aired on Saturday, a Dallas business manager said he had hired Johnson for a private security job.
The case of a 22-year-old man accused of impersonating a law enforcement officer at Galleria Dallas is getting more complicated.
The Dallas Police Department told NBC DFW that since Friday evening, Leadarius Johnson is being held at the Dallas County Jail on a charge of impersonating a public servant. His bond is $100,000. He also had other outstanding warrants.
Officers said Johnson was wearing "police gear with no visible insignia" when he was spotted by a real police officer at about 9 p.m. Friday.
After an NBC 5 report aired on Saturday, Warren Barconia, manager of Undisputed Wireless on Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard in South Dallas, contacted NBC 5 saying he had hired Johnson about three weeks ago for a private security job at the store.
According to Barconia and other store employees, Johnson had approached managers and identifed himself as a Dallas County Sheriff’s Deputy while offering his security services for cash.
Barconia said Johnson worked for a few weeks at the store, during which he managed to “clean up” the “whole block” while posing as law enforcement.
“Mace, gun, handcuffs -- identical. You couldn’t tell the difference,” said Barconia. “You see a badge, you see a gun -- that’s the credentials the public sees with an officer.”
Barconia shared video with NBC 5, which he claims shows Johnson walking up the block toward a cluster of Dallas police officers responding to an emergency.
Johnson, dressed in gear similar to the officers, appears to jump into action, even helping law enforcement load a patient into an ambulance.
Barconia said it was not an isolated incident, but rather, Johnson interacted with law enforcement almost daily.
“He interacted with all the officers that came here as a sheriff,” he said. “He informed some of the officers that he was a sheriff.”
Store employees said Johnson often talked about his other security gigs in the Dallas area, where they say he was also identifying himself as an off-duty deputy.
They said he often showed them cash from those shifts.
When questioned at the Galleria Dallas, police said Johnson identified himself as a Dallas County Sheriff's Deputy. When pressed for law enforcement credentials, he gave a fake name.
Impersonating a public servant is a third degree felony, which carries 2-to-10 years in prison if convicted.