Man charged with impersonating Springettsbury detective

John Joyce
  • A man claiming to be a Springettsbury police detective told a woman her street was locked down, records show.
  • The woman's husband recognized the fraud and subdued the man with a wristlock until real cops arrived.

A homeowner placed a man pretending to be a police detective under citizen's arrest in Springettsbury Township in July and held him in a wristlock until police — from the real Springettsbury Township Police Department — arrived, according to court documents.

Joseph Prusasky, 41, of 1940 Garnet Road, picked the wrong doorbell to ring the night of July 17, when he allegedly decided to impersonate a Springettsbury police detective while trying to have his ex-wife's car towed from her residence to his, according to charging documents.

Prusasky is charged with impersonating a public servant.

LOGO 911

According to the documents, officers arrived at a house in the 200 block of Haines Road about 8:30 p.m. and found Prusasky being held in a wristlock by the husband of the woman whose doorbell he rang.

Prusasky allegedly told Carrie Landis her neighborhood was on lockdown and that she should stay inside the residence. Landis called her husband, Sean Landis, to tell him what was going on, the documents said.

Sean Landis immediately returned home and found Prusasky standing on his property, peering through the trees at 216 Haines Drive, the residence of his ex-wife. Sean Landis asked Prusasky, "What's going on?" to which Prusasky replied that "they" were looking for someone, according to the documents.

Sean Landis told Prusasky he did not recognize him and asked him to show some identification. Prusasky told him he was a detective with the Springettsbury Township Police Department, but he refused to produce ID. After trying to wave Landis off to no avail, Prusasky agreed to leave the area, the documents said. But as Prusasky neared his 2001 Jeep Cherokee, Sean Landis looked more closely at the Jeep and realized it was not a police vehicle.

Springettsbury PD: Man impersonated a detective

Prusasky tried to get into the Jeep, according to the documents, but Landis pulled him out, placed him in a wristlock and held him there until actual gun-toting, badge-wearing Springettsbury police officers arrived.

According to the charging documents, Prusasky told officers he was in the area because he wanted to have his ex-wife's car towed to his residence, but the tow truck could not get close enough to the driveway because of a low overhang. Prusasky said AAA told him it would get another tow truck out as soon as it could, and he decided to wait in the area.

That's when he decided to impersonate a police detective and tell Carrie Landis to stay inside, according to the documents.

A preliminary hearing has not yet been scheduled.

— Reach John Joyce at   jjoyce2@yorkdispatch.comor on Twitter at @JohnJoyceYD.