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updated: 9/5/2013 3:41 PM

Palatine man charged with impersonating officer

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A 39-year-old Palatine man, who police say claimed to be a police officer and drew a weapon on two men following a car accident Tuesday afternoon, faces charges of impersonating a police officer and unlawful restraint.

Cook County Judge Jill Cerone Marisie on Thursday set bail at $500,000 for Karl Marciniak, of the 400 block of Fontenay Way. Marisie also ordered the defendant to surrender any firearms as well as his Firearm Owners Identification card and have no contact with the complaining witnesses. Additionally, Marisie ordered that Marciniak be placed on electronic monitoring if he posts the $50,000 cash required to be released from Cook County Jail.

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Marciniak was arrested following an accident Tuesday afternoon in the 1000 block of Euclid Road, Palatine, involving a vehicle driven by Marciniak and another car, said Cook County Assistant State's Attorney Moe Ahmad.

Marciniak, who was wearing a police badge or star on a chain around his neck at the time, got out of his vehicle and pulled a .45 caliber handgun from a waistband holster, Ahmad said. He is accused of pointing the weapon at the driver and passenger and ordering the two men out of the car, then opening the driver side door and pulling the driver out, Ahmad said. Marciniak yelled at the man and struck him with the gun, then ordered the passenger to put his hands in the air, Ahmad said.

Insisting he was "the police," Marciniak refused to cooperate with Palatine police officers who arrived on the scene moments later, Ahmad said, adding that the defendant told officers he was a retired Chicago Police officer working for the Justice Department.

The Palatine officers' investigation revealed that Marciniak was not affiliated with any local, county, state or federal law enforcement agency, Ahmad said. Additionally, the badge Marciniak wore had the words "police officer" on top and the word "Greece" on the bottom with an image of the Greek flag in the middle, Ahmad said.

Marciniak remains at Northwest Community Hospital where he was taken after he complained of back pain. He next appears in court on Sept. 27.

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