Veteran steals another's war story, bilks gov't for $322,654
Here we go again....
First his story:
A federal judge on Friday called Brandon Blackstone's actions in faking a war injury to profit financially "shameful, shameful conduct" before sentencing him to 21 months in prison.
Blackstone, 35, a Marine veteran from Arlington, also will have to pay the Veterans Affairs department $322,654 in restitution for monthly disability payments he received from November 2006 to December 2015, according to the ruling from U.S. District Judge Barbara Lynn.
The Blackstone scheme is the latest in an increasing number of stolen valor cases. Experts say it's rare, however, for veterans who actually served in combat to lie about their wartime experiences for financial or other gain....
And the case achieved some notoriety due to Blackstone's multiple media appearances in which he gave details on camera of being blown up in Iraq by a land mine that were strikingly similar to that of fellow Marine, Casey Owens. In fact, Blackstone left Iraq for a non-combat medical issue and never returned.
I'd love to know which experts were saying it is rare, because hardly a day goes by we don't find at least two that are lying.
More from the article:
Lynn said her task was to look at "the whole of you," and she acknowledged that he appears to have "a lot" of medical problems. But she did not hide her feelings about Blackstone's crime.
"This crime is just completely repulsive and appalling," she told him.
Lynn said his actions "made a mockery" of everything he's done, and she called it a "betrayal" of his service in the Marines. She said it also "blemishes" those who actually were injured in combat.
"It's beyond the pale," Lynn said. "Absolutely reprehensible."
Before his sentence, Blackstone told Lynn he was "truly sorry for all the problems I caused."
The judge told Blackstone, who has a wife and 7-year-old daughter, that he should make an example of himself and let others know how he "went awry."
One of the charges he was convicted of was Stolen Valor, so at least we're seeing some US Attorney's finally going after folks on the new law.