(NEW YORK) — Mississippi police fear that a killer posing as a police officer is pulling over motorists late at night on dark highways and then shooting them.
Authorities suspect the shooter may be pretending to be a cop because the perpetrator may have been driving a white, unmarked Crown Victoria sedan, which can resemble a police car.
One driver, a 74-year-old Nebraska man, was found in his car on Interstate 55 in Panola County on May 8 about 1:30 a.m. A 48-year-old Mississippi woman was found near her car on Mississippi Highway 713 in nearby Tunica County about 2:15 a.m. — three days later.
The shootings appear to be random and there is no known connection between the victims. The Nebraska man was en route to Florida to get his grandson, and the female victim worked at nearby casino. Police are analyzing shell casings discovered at both scenes.
Authorities have launched a dragnet; saturating the area, looking for clues and a possible suspect.
“We urge everyone to be cautious while driving, especially at night,” the Tate County Sheriff’s Office posted on their Facebook page. “If someone attempts to pull you over with flashing lights and you feel unsure of stopping, DON’T PULL OVER. Use your cell phone and dial 911 and if it’s a real officer then the dispatcher will confirm it for you and if it’s not a real officer they will send help to you.”
“Our deputies have been told not to overreact if someone does not immediately pull over,” the sheriff’s office wrote. “Your safety is our primary concern.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Chuck Johnston, CNN Newswire
Ray Sanchez, CNN Newswire