A 34-year-old Riverbank man was jailed on Wednesday morning, Sept. 4 after he gave a false identity to police because he thought he had warrants for his arrest but he did not.
The arrest came with an 8:42 a.m. citizen flag-down in the 1700 block of Hatch Road. Officer Jonathan Blount was told he had been approached and scared by a transient looking man who had a large knife in his hand. The man was last seen walking toward Richland Avenue on Hatch Road.
Officer Blount began a search and found two males near the AM/PM at 1700 Hatch Road. Officer Blount asked if either had a knife and one of the men pointed to a large knife lying on top of a metal container next to them. Both men were ordered to move away from the knife as he asked for their identities. The man who pointed out the knife provided his correct name. The other man, Thomas Hoffman, 34, of Riverbank, provided a false name. At one point the first man referred to Hoffman by his true first name.
Officer Blount noticed the discrepancy and asked Hoffman for his real name but Hoffman insisted on using the false name. Dispatchers sent the officer a photograph of the person Hoffman claimed to be. When confronted with the photograph of someone else, Hoffman admitted to giving the name of a friend living in the Bay area and provided his true name. He said he concealed his identity in the belief that he had warrants for his arrest but in fact did not.
Hoffman was arrested and booked into the Stanislaus County Public Safety Center for falsely personating another, making them potentially criminally liable.