It turns out that those evacuated due to the still raging High Park Fire have more to be concerned about than just one of the most devastating wildfires to rip through Colorado in state history. Over the weekend, police arrested a Denver man for impersonating a firefighter in the High Park Fire area.
According to the Larimer County Sheriff's Office, Michael Stillman Maher, 30, presented phony firefighter credentials and was seen driving a silver Toyota Tacoma with a government license plate.
When Maher was arrested early Sunday morning outside of a local bar in Laporte, police found stolen property in his car and that the license plate had also been stolen from Glenwood Springs.
Maher was arrested for:
- Obstructing Fire/Police
- Impersonating Fire/Police
- Attempt to Influence Public Servant
Manager Michael Rivera at the Long Branch Lounge, a bar in the area that Maher was seen in, told KDVR that staff and customers had applauded Maher for his service as a fireman.
“He acted like he was somebody,” Rivera said.
At a Sunday morning briefing Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith warned that authorities will find people unauthorized to be in the fire area.
“We have extra roving patrols to watch for looters,” Smith said.
Maher is being held at the Larimer County Jail pending setting of bond.
LOOK dramatic photos, videos of the High Park Fire still burning in Larimer County: