Kensington, NH – A New Hampshire man admitted to police that he was posing as a Drug Enforcement Administration agent and stopped vehicles because it made him feel important.
James Behen, 35, was charged with four counts felony false personation claims, according to the New Hampshire Union Leader.
Behen also told police he flashed blue lights that he had mounted on his car so he could get through traffic faster because he was late for a doctor’s appointment.
He is accused of posing as a DEA agent when he stopped four vehicles as of July 19. Behen has pleaded not guilty.
The New Hampshire Union Leader reported that the state police and DEA knew about Behen’s impersonation of a federal officer because they caught him earlier this year and warned him to stop or face federal prosecution.
“James said he would get excitement and ... he felt people treated him differently,” Kensington Police Sergeant Scott Cain wrote in a police report, according to the New Hampshire Union Leader.
The Kensington Police Department caught Behen after his wife was driving without him and stopped by police.
Behen’s wife was pulled over by Kensington Police Officer Sean Wlasuk and he gave her a ticket for an uninspected vehicle.
During that traffic stop, Officer Wlasuk saw that Behen was the registered owner of the vehicle and had been flagged for having a history as posing as a DEA agent and DEA K-9 handler, according to a police report.
Officer Wlasuk then noticed a pickup truck passing back and forth by his police cruiser. The pickup truck then pulled up to the police cruiser and Behen was the driver. He asked the officer how much the fine would be for his wife.
Officer Wlasuk told Behen the fine was $74.40 and then Behen told the officer that he was a DEA agent who worked out of Manchester.
Behen claimed that he was about to be transferred to the Lawrence area for drug work. Behen also told Officer Wlasuk that he was involved in a “big case” in Concord and that he had raided many meth labs in Lebanon.
“He continued to state to Officer Wlasuk that he and his partner were also first on scene at the recent rollover fatal accident on Route 101. James said that he would soon be part of a lot of work coming up in Seabrook,” according to a police report.
The New Hampshire Union Leader said that Officer Wlasuk was suspicious of Behen’s claims and investigated them the next day and discovered Behen was never a DEA agent.
When Officer Wlasuk contacted the state police, he learned that agency had several dispatch recordings of Behen identifying himself as a DEA agent to dispatchers.
The state police also said that Behen claimed to work for the DEA when he called in domestic incidents and other traffic issues, the New Hampshire Union Leader reported.
State police and DEA officials went to meet Behen at his home in February to warn him that if he didn’t stop what he was doing he could be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. They did not arrest him at that time.
Kensington Police arrested Behen on July 27 while he was driving his pickup truck.
During his arrest, Behen told police he wasn’t a DEA agent and said, “I did something stupid,” according to the New Hampshire Union Leader.
A police report said that Behan had a concealed firearm behind his back. He also had a ballistic vest with a patch that said, “POLICE” under his driver’s seat. A badge was found in a belt clip and blue lights were mounted on the passenger’s side visor, according to the New Hampshire Union Leader.