A cautionary tale claims that a woman named Lauren had narrowly avoided being raped by a criminal posing as a police officer in an unmarked police officer by calling 112, which connected her to the emergency services.
This particular tale has previously circulated across the Internet in many different variations, ranging from highly misleading to slightly misleading. Perhaps the most popular version of the tale is written below and claims a girl named Lauren had managed to avoid the clutches of rapists by calling 112 and refusing to pull over for an unmarked police car.
That example reads –
EVERYBODY SHOULD READ THIS!!!!!!!!!
REPOST…IT CAN SAVE A LIFE OR TWO!!!
WARNING: Some knew about the red light on cars, but not Dialing 112.
An UNMARKED police car pulled up behind her and put his lights on. Lauren’s parents have always told her to never pull over for an unmarked car on the side of the road, but rather to wait until they get to a gas station, etc.
Lauren had actually listened to her parents advice, and promptly called, 112 on her cell phone to tell the police dispatcher that she would not pull over right away. She proceeded to tell the dispatcher that there was an unmarked police car with a flashing red light on his rooftop behind her. The dispatcher checked to see if there were police cars where she was and there werent, and he told her to keep driving, remain calm and that he had back up already on the way.
Ten minutes later 4 cop cars surrounded her and the unmarked car behind her. One policeman went to her side and the others surrounded the car behind. They pulled the guy from the car and tackled him to the ground. The man was a convicted rapist and wanted for other crimes.
I never knew about the 112 Cell Phone feature. I tried it on my AT&T phone & it said, “Dialing Emergency Number.”
Especially for a woman alone in a car, you should not pull over for an unmarked car. Apparently police have to respect your right to keep going on to a safe place.
*Speaking to a service representative at Bell Mobility confirmed that 112 was a direct link to State trooper info. So, now it`s your turn to let your friends know about “Dialing, 112”
You may want to send this to every Man, Woman & Youngster you know; it may well save a life.
This applies to ALL 50 states
PLEASE PASS ALONG TO FRIENDS AND FAMILY, IT CAN SAVE A LIFE….
Firstly, it is important to note that the tale of Lauren appears to be apocryphal. That is to say, it most probably never happened as described. The story has been spreading across the Internet on and off for well over a decade at the time of writing – and in classic urban legend style, has been attached to dozens of countries across the world including South Africa, the United States and the UK. No online searches manage to pull any records of such an incident matching this description.
Instead the story is probably a fictitious cautionary tale rather than an account of a real life event, used to illustrate the potential dangers of pulling over for unmarked police cars in isolated areas. While as we write this there has been no surge in crimes matching the tale above, crooks impersonating police officers is something that can happen, and crooks using unmarked police cars is certainly not outside the realms of possibility.
Specific advice on what to do if being flashed by an unmarked police car in a secluded area can vary between country and police force, but the most popular advice if you are unsure as to the authenticity of an unmarked police car is to drive to the nearest populated area, use your indicators to acknowledge the request of the police car and if in doubt, contact the emergency services who will be able to verify if one of their cars is following you. Do not speed off which may lead to a police officer believing you are trying to get away. In that respect, this cautionary tale does contain a grain of truth worth heeding.
As for the advice about using 112, this is really only necessary if you are in another country to which you don’t know the emergency number. It is considered a universal emergency number that should work in most countries across most phone networks.
However, despite what other variants of this rumour claim, 112 doesn’t have any special properties that a native emergency services number doesn’t. For example, it cannot connect you to the emergency services if 999 or 911 cannot. As such, if you’re in your home country, using 112 is not necessary; just stick to what you already know.
Other variants of this same tale replace 112 with *677 and *77, and these should definitely not be circulated as they can cause confusion. *677 only connects you to the police if you’re in Ontario, Canada, and *77 only works in a handful of US states. Don’t use these numbers.