MINNEAPOLIS — A Dodge County man has been arrested and charged in U.S. District Court for impersonating a federal agent, the U.S. Attorney's Office said Monday, Sept. 20.
According to court documents, on Aug. 17, 2021, the FBI received a tip that Reyel Devon Simmons, 52, of Dodge Center, was impersonating a federal agent with the Department of Homeland Security. A hearing is scheduled for Wednesday.
The investigation revealed that Simmons used the false name “Rey Reeves” and regularly portrayed himself on social media as a federal agent. Simmons, who had nearly 10,000 followers on TikTok, used a profile photo that showed him wearing law enforcement gear and made several posts displaying law enforcement equipment, badges and firearms, and referred to himself as a federal agent.
A woman told investigators that Simmons told her he was a former Navy Seal and knew of other Navy Seals such as Chris Kyle, who the movie "American Sniper" is based on. The two were in a romantic relationship for about eight months. The complaint notes that Simmons is married.
The woman said she regularly saw Simmons carrying a badge, law enforcement credentials and wearing law enforcement attire and that his truck was equipped with a light bar and police radio.
The woman began to suspect Simmons was a fraud after someone commented under one of his TikToks "stolen valor — impersonating a police officer again!" He changed the privacy setting on his TikTok account after the incident so that only people he approved could see what he posted and comment.
The woman reached out to the commenter for more information and then conducted her own investigation into Simmons and concluded he was a fraud. It was at that point she reported him to the FBI.
According to court documents, Simmons is not and has never been employed by the Department of Homeland Security. Minnesota Department of Labor records do not show that Simmons is, or has been, employed by the military or any law enforcement agency. Investigators also filed an official records request to the Federal Emergency Management Agency to confirm that Simmons never worked for FEMA.
He has previously been charged in Colorado for impersonating a police officer. Court records indicate he is prohibited from possession a firearm because of prior felony convictions.
This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office.
Anyone who has had an interaction with Simmons is asked to contact the FBI at 1-800-CALL-FBI or submit tips online at tips.fbi.gov. His TikTok handle was @meandmyself81.