Westlake man charged with impersonating officer, theft

By By Johnathan Manning / American Press

A Westlake man stole a relative’s deputy sheriff uniform and wore it while stealing two televisions from Walmart on Tuesday, authorities said.

Gary A. Robertson, 26, 2936 Hudson Drive, was charged with impersonating a police officer and theft over $500, Sulphur Police Chief Lewis Coats said Tuesday. Calcasieu Sheriff Tony Mancuso said he expected theft and traffic charges to be added.

Robertson was being held Tuesday on $120,000 bond set by Judge Robert Wyatt.

Mancuso said authorities don’t know how long Robertson had the uniform.

“He may have tried to strong-arm some people while wearing this uniform in the last couple days,” said Mancuso, who asked anyone with information to come forward.

Mancuso would not identify the employee from whom the uniform was stolen, but said she is a “very good employee” and is “held in high regard by me and this department.”

When Walmart security officers saw what they believed to be a sheriff’s deputy stealing two flat-screen TVs at about 11:30 a.m., they did not approach him, but instead called police, Coats said.

"They were “a bit shocked this had gone on,” he said. “I think they did the right thing. They knew law enforcement could be called, and they would get to the bottom of it,” Mancuso said.

Coats said he immediately called Mancuso. “My first reaction, I’m sure my blood pressure went off the charts at that point because

I was livid,” Mancuso said. “I’m going to tell you I was pretty upset about this, and rightly so.”

Detectives questioned deputies who looked like the man in the video, Mancuso said.

Eventually a sheriff’s detective and a state trooper recognized Robertson from the photos, the sheriff said.

Robertson was stopped in a white truck matching the description Walmart employees had given authorities, Mancuso said.

Robertson was apprehended after a short chase, he said.

Mancuso said Robertson has a criminal history.