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Arroyo Grande man arrested for impersonating police officer

An Arroyo Grande transgender man has been arrested and charged with impersonating a police officer.

The unusual case began last Friday night and ended with the suspect’s arrest early Sunday morning.

Grover Beach Police say the suspect is identified as Mr. Ken M. Kennon.

The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Department says Kennon has been booked into County Jail as a female.

Police say last Friday night Kennon made a traffic enforcement stop in the 800 block of North Oak Park Boulevard near the intersection with West Grand Avenue driving a white Toyota Prius with mounted flashing emergency lights and Texas license plates.

The driver Kennon alleged pulled over followed him into a nearby parking lot where police say the driver confronted Kennon and wrote down his license plate number.

The driver then pulled over along the 1700 block of West Grand Avenue and called 911.

Police tracked Kennon and his vehicle to an address in Arroyo Grande where Kennon is living temporarily with his mother and her husband.

The couple invited Central Coast News inside their home but declined to comment on camera about Kennon’s arrest.

They did say the 52 year old Kennon has always wanted to be a police officer but struggled with the effects of a brain injury he suffered as a teenager.

They say Kennon has worked as a security guard in the past and kept his official looking jacket, badge and handcuffs.

Detectives are now trying to determine if anyone else has fallen victim to Kennon’s alleged police impersonation.

“The face looks like a face that you’ve seen but it doesn’t look like someone who would represent the police department”, said local resident Dezri Smith when shown Kennon’s photograph, “that’s a very scary story because you don’t dare ignore the lights, you have to pull over, you don’t delay, you respond to police authority with respect. That’s the question isn’t it, how do you know?”

Ken Kennon has been charged with felony and misdemeanor impersonation of a police officer with bail set at $20,000.

Anyone with further information on this investigation or anyone that may have encountered a similar situation can contact Detective Carey with the Grover Beach Police Department at (805) 473-4502.

You may also provide further information by calling or e-mailing San Luis Obispo County Crime Stoppers at (805) 549-STOP (7867) or their website at


Grover Beach police, with assistance from the Arroyo Grande Police Department, arrested 52-year-old Ken M. Kennon, of Arroyo Grande, for allegedly impersonating a police officer.

At about 10:15 p.m. on January 13, Grover Beach police say they received a report that a white Toyota Prius with Texas license plates used a “mounted emergency lighting system to conduct a traffic enforcement stop in the 800 block of N. Oak Park Boulevard.”

Investigators say the caller followed the Prius to a nearby parking lot where “they confronted the male driver, wrote down the license plate, and contacted the Grover Beach Police Department.”

The owner of the Prius was eventually identified as Kennon, who was subsequently arrested in Arroyo Grande two days after the incident was reported. The Prius was seized by police as evidence in this case.

Kennon was booked at San Luis Obispo County Jail for felony impersonation of another, and misdemeanor impersonation of a police officer. His bail was set at $20,000.

Anyone with information regarding this case is asked to contact Detective Carey with the Grover Beach Police Department at 805-473-4502.

NOTE: The Grover Beach Police Department told KCOY 12 that Kennon was booked as a man, according to the driver license found on Kennon’s person at the time of the arrest. However, the SLO County Sheriff’s Department listed Kennon as female in their “Who’s in Custody” jail log.

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