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Duluth man gets prison time for impersonating cop

A Duluth man who pleaded guilty to charges of impersonating a police officer in an attempt to get into the safes of two Central Hillside gas stations was sentenced Thursday to 2½ years in prison.

Cody Lee Walker-Nelson, 23, pleaded guilty last month in State District Court to charges of third-degree burglary and impersonating an officer. On Thursday, Judge Sally Tarnowski sentenced him to 30 months in prison.

Walker-Nelson was arrested in February after police said he entered the Cenex gas station on Sixth Avenue East and Ninth Street dressed like an officer, wearing a fake badge around his neck and carrying a chemical aerosol container and a stun gun on a duty belt.

The defendant told the clerk that he was a drug task force officer and requested access to surveillance camera footage, and then asked to look in the store safe. A similar description and activity were reported a few blocks down Ninth Street at another Cenex station.

Walker-Nelson was later found at his grandmother’s house on the 1600 block of East Fifth Street, where he was arrested. The grandmother said she had been driving Walker-Nelson around that day to convenience stores, believing he was applying for jobs.