PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (WPRI) – A Providence man has pleaded no contest to a charge of impersonating a public official after police said he identified himself as a DCYF worker while trying to sign out a female student from Portsmouth High School.
Detective Lt. Michael Arnold of the Portsmouth Police Department said in a news release that 26-year-old Armando Hernandez of Providence went to the school last Friday, October 13, at about 10:30 a.m. and tried to sign the student out.
Hernandez told a school employee that he was a DCYF social worker but said he was new and hadn’t yet been issued any identification, so the school employee refused to release the student to him. Hernandez left, but the school notified police.
Investigators obtained a warrant for Hernandez’s arrest on October 19 and US Marshals and State Troopers arrested him at his Wesleyan Avenue home shortly before 7 a.m. the following day. Hernandez was charged with impersonating a public official, a misdemeanor, and pleaded no contest in Newport District Court.
Arnold said that Hernandez admitted that he was an Uber driver and that the student had contacted him for a ride. Hernandez was sentenced to a year’s probation and was ordered to stay away from the school.