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Florida man arrested for stealing grouper, potatoes then impersonating federal officer

Deputies say when the Publix Loss Prevention Officer stopped him, Stotelmyer stated he didn't have to pay for the items and identified himself as a U.S. Marshal.
Credit: Flagler County Sheriff’s Office

A Flagler County man has been arrested after deputies say he was caught red-handed stealing groceries Friday night, then later pretended to be a federal officer.

The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office responded to a shoplifting incident at the Publix at 4950 Belle Terre Parkway at 7 p.m.

They came into contact with a man who was later identified as Leroy Stotelmyer, 60, who was caught trying to exit the store with two boxes of potatoes and a grouper fillet.

Deputies say when the Publix Loss Prevention Officer stopped him, Stotelmyer stated he didn't have to pay for the items and identified himself as a U.S. Marshal. Stotelmyer then placed the shopping bag on the ground and exited the store. 

When the Loss Prevention Officer then approached Stotelmyer in his vehicle in the parking lot, they say Stotelmyer displayed a gold badge in a black holder that read “United States Marshal” on it. 

FCSO located Stotelmyer at his home on Hidden Treasure Drive where he denied all accusations. Once deputies made Stotelmyer aware that the entire incident was captured on Publix’s surveillance cameras, he said "OK."

Stotelmyer told deputies that he identified himself as an "Air Marshall Flight Examiner" and showed them a badge that reportedly said 'US' in bold blue letters and then said Flight Examiner in smaller inconspicuous letters underneath.

Stotelmyer was arrested and taken into custody for False Impersonation of a Federal Law Enforcement Officer, Petit Shoplifting, and Resisting a Merchant. He was booked into the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility and released after posting a $3,500.00 bond.