Another Stolen Valor Arrest

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Another Stolen Valor Arrest

Slow day, but we had another one arrested yesterday:

Police here say a man conned his way into a new car,  a block of apartments, and a bunch of furniture. Officials say he was able to carry out the scam by posing as a Marine.

32-year-old Brandon Blankenship is charged with the following:

  • False statement regarding military service with intent to commit a crime (two counts)
  • Unauthorized use of an entity's identifying information or documents (two counts)

There's a pretty good video at the link.  But we also have his the charging sheet:

Back to the original story:

According to the complaint, in a separate incident, Blankenship is accused of leasing 20 apartments under the premise that "he was a platoon leader for the United States Marine Corps and needed the apartments to rent for numerous Marines. Purportedly the United States Department of Defense would be paying...for the rent on all 20 units." The complaint indicates Blankenship "did not show any documentation of his status as a member of the Marine Corps, but did verbalize that he is a representative of the United States Department of Defense as a platoon leader for the Marine Corps Security Services Division." The complex manager interviewed in the complaint was not available for comment Tuesday.

The complaint says, "It was not believed that Blankenship is in the military and that the rental scheme was some sort of fraudulent activity."

Been a good week for busting these people.

Posted in the burner | 13 comments
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I served a couple of tours in Vietnam with the 5th Marines and was wounded twice. I'll never understand how someone could sink this low making false claims of military service for free material positions. I would like to know his real reasoning.

I understand that the federal government no longer has any laws on the books for stolen valor crimes... and in my opinion they are crimes. I've seen this sort of thing first hand and it is repulsive. I'm a Vietnam era Navy veteran and I don't understand how veteran impersonators, particularly when they claim to have received bronze or silver stars with combat insignias, are not prosecuted by the federal government when reported.

There. Is a guy thats comes in the amvets and they call him sarge. He was never in the marine corps but is an associate member of the marine corps league. He asked me one time what rank i was i said sgt. Oh he said i out rank you im a staff sgt. I said well i earned mine. That kind of bothered me.

If more of our prosecuting attorneys and judges were veterans and were up holding the laws today like they have been sworn to do, we would have more maximum penalties enforced. Today the judges are too lenient regarding this type of fraud.

First off the maximum penalty should be reserved for instances where the crime's damage calls for it. Next off I don't see where they will ever actually prove either count of that indictment. It comes down to his word versus the word of his accuser. No document trail, no actual fake credential, just a man telling people he is a Marine assigned to procure housing for a Marine Purpose.

Now think about what he IS ACCUSED of doing and then ask yourself who would be that GULLIBLE. Common knowledge in America is the GOVERNMENT does everything in writing. And writes everything in QUADRUPLICATE when it comes to money and material.

I don't even see a crime here I see a person pulling a prank. Come on now the accuser sounds pretty darn stupid if you asking me. Might explain why he/she has declined interviews.

I have always advocated for stopping this activity. I understand the need for financial support and membership numbers. However, in my opinion the bad seems to always out weigh the good.
Recently I approached a highly decorated airborne ranger telling stories on those who would listen. I was wearing my SUBVET VEST and Hat. All was going well until I asked key questions under the guise of mutual Interest. The BS followed. I approached him at his parked car and told him I know he is a phony and the cops are on the way. He was gone in a heart beat. I notified local VFW & Legion posts.

I joined the US Air Force, Oct 2, 1970 and served until June 12, 1971. I was at Seymour Johnson AFB, Goldsboro, NC, 4th Civl Engineering Sqdn. People like this make me ashamed even though I did receive an Honorable discharge. Keep sharp folks !

My son areal Marine is out in the cold searching for reliable employment,and these a holes get away with all this as a disabled Marine Airdale this is out of my realm of reality. I am happy real vets are getting noticed but don't give the store away without checking ,real vets carry I . D.

Retired Navy: Had the honor and privilege to sail and serve with the Marines several times back in the 70 and 80's and would do it again if I could. These fake veterans give a true vet a case of heartburn that can only be remedied by locking the jerks up and losing or throwing away the key. As this issue isn't new, makes a person wonder why vendors and business owners aren't more diligent in making sure they are dealing with true honest veterans. I also wonder why many of these fake vets are allowed to walk around free with no punishment or repercussions from their repeated attempts to defraud the public?

Why wasn't Richard Blumenthal ever prosecuted for lying about serving in Vietnam? He gained a Senate seat through his deception.

About 8 years ago, I was a Personal Care Attendant in Mesquite, NV for a disabled stepson (about 45 years old and yes, he drives - somehow) of a deceased retired USAF Colonel - SAC bomber pilot. This disabled person with MS, Epilepsy and severe physical disfigurement had a commissary card for use on any military base, as the local one was Nellis in Las Vegas.
The problem started when the new cards were redesigned and only showed the beneficiary name, NOT that of the Retire Officer. But it DID still have the rank. So Henry started telling everyone he was a retired Colonel and making up stories that he served at Creech, etc. The only way this person could ever have served is if our entire armed forces had been wiped out and the US was drafting the elderly and the severely handicapped. . .

I served from 1974 - 1978+ 2 yrs Reserve in the Navy at the tail end of the Nam comflict, was in the 7th Fleet on the USS Decatur. I was an Emergency Medical Technician and a trainer in Emergency Management with US Dept of Labor/MSHA Instructor Credentials for20+ years. I'm currently the Assistant Adjutant for Post 176, if anyone has any questions.

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News from the World of Military and Veterans Issues. Iraq and A-Stan in parenthesis reflects that the author is currently deployed to that theater.