Man Arrested For Impersonating Cop And Demanding Donut Discount

A lot of shenanigans are known to go down at donut shops in the wee hours of the night. One of the few places open at 3 a.m., donut shops were once a watering hole for troublemakers and drunk cravings.

That is, until donut shop owners wised up and started handing out free donuts to cops to lure them in and maintain some sense of order. Donut shops eventually lost their bad reputations, but the cop and jelly donut stereotype, well, that stuck.

And 48-year-old Charles Barry might not be a cop but he has the gun and badge to prove it. To him, that warrants a free donut and, eventually, handcuffs.

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According to Tampa Bay Times, Charles Thomas Barry visits the Dunkin Donuts in Pasco County every week. Sometimes he's a U.S. Marshal, other times he's a U.S. Air Marshal, sometimes he even has his family in tow. Each time he always asks for a discount, and sometimes they actually give him 10 percent off.

On November 6th, Barry came in and asked for his discount after flashing his gold star badge. When the cashier questioned him, he took out the revolver. "See I'm a cop!" he said (although never pointing the gun at him).

The store manager, Michelle Hoeltk, eventually asked the Pasco sheriff's Capt. James Mallo if asking for free donuts was actually still a thing. He explained that officers can receive discounts, but they can't ask for them.

That's when the sting operation went down.

The next time Barry pulled up to the Dunkin Donuts in his blue minivan, the store manager took down his license plate. When Barry came again, officers pulled him over. They found a Morris County Sherrif's badge in his wallet and a gun in his front pocket.

Barry was immediately arrested for impersonating a police officer and improper exhibition of a firearm. Apparently his father had been a cop in New Jersey.

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Jess Swanson is a staff writer at New Times. Born and raised in Miami, she graduated from the University of Miami’s School of Communication and wrote briefly for the student newspaper until realizing her true calling: pissing off fraternity brothers by reporting about their parties on her crime blog. Especially gifted in jumping rope and solving Rubik’s cubes, she also holds the title for longest stint as an unpaid intern in New Times history. She left the Magic City for New York to earn her master’s degree from Columbia University School of Journalism, where she spent a year profiling circumcised men who were trying to regrow their foreskins for a story that ultimately won the John Horgan Award for Critical Science Journalism. Terrified by pizza rats and arctic temperatures, she quickly returned to her natural habitat.
Contact: Jess Swanson