LYNN, Mass. — A Massachusetts man charged with pretending to be a police officer and robbing several people has been sent to mental health facility.

Christian Alvarez pleaded not guilty Monday to several charges including impersonating a police officer and armed robbery before a judge ordered him to Bridgewater State Hospital to determine whether he is competent.

A woman told authorities she was pulled over by a man who flashed a police badge at about 3 a.m. Saturday and took her wallet.

Police caught up with the suspect, who they say led officers on a chase before crashing into a tree. Police took him into custody after a foot chase.

Authorities think Alvarez may be responsible for several similar robberies.

A court clinician says Alvarez did not understand why he was in court.

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