Today, at a D.C. Superior Court hearing, former liquor control board honcho Charles Brodsky pleaded not guilty to pretending to be a cop.

The former chairman is accused of keeping a parking placard in the window of his 2008 Audi that read “Metropolitan Police Department Police Official Business.” Brodsky also had a police dashboard light, say court documents. He was arrested on May 28 for the placard, a day after he had resigned from the liquor board following an accusation of misconduct.

According to court papers, Brodsky was busted when a cop on a Segway in Adams Morgan stopped to issue a ticket to his Audi because it was parked illegally. Charging documents say Brodsky then came out and removed the police light and placard from his dash and windshield. The items amounted to Brodsky pretending to be law enforcement, police say. He was cuffed and charged with “False Impersonation of a Police Officer.”

Brodsky’s attorney couldn’t immediately be reached, but Brodsky told Channel 7 in May that he had a right to the cop paraphernalia: “In October 27, 2010, he said he was issued a Special Conservator of the Peace designation through a Virginia court order. With it, he said he is allowed to use a flashing red light and identify himself as a police officer.”

But court documents say the placard referred to the D.C. police police force specifically, and even carried its emblem. Police union head Kris Baumann says Virginia courts wouldn’t have empowered Brodsky to represent himself as a member of MPD. If Brodsky did, the case will likely be a slam dunk for prosecutors. Brodsky will face a preliminary hearing on July 21.

Photo by Darrow Montgomery