Arizona man busted for pretending to be a Marine

We’ve all know folks who exaggerate a bit, perhaps say they run a business when all they really do is run the business’s trash out the Dumpster.

But one Arizona guy went above and beyond simple exaggeration and claimed to be a highly decorated U.S. Marine.

John William Rodriguez, 31, didn’t save his faux boasting for dates or personal chats, either, but made it widely known to the masses.

This Scottsdale guy was even introduced at large functions as a decorated veteran.

That’s also how he got busted.

An authentic former Marine thought Rodriguez’s uniform looked a little less than authentic. He also found it odd that a 31-year-old would be donning the Navy Cross.

Once the Arizona Department of Public Safety started investigating they learned Rodriguez had been introduced as a decorated veteran at several functions. He also listed serving in the military on his driver’s license.

Arizona Department of Public Safety arrests suspected military impersonator, news release

John William Rodriquez, 31, of Scottsdale was booked into the Maricopa County Jail on 13 felony fraud schemes stemming from his impersonation of a highly decorated Marine. The arrest culminates a lengthy investigation which uncovered evidence that Rodriquez had been portraying himself as a U.S. Marine Gunnery Sergeant or Warrant Officer for at least a year.

Rodriquez faces possible federal charges in addition to his arrest for ARS Title 13 Felony Fraud Schemes.

Wow. That’s some heavy charges for pretending to be a Marine. Guess no one gets away with nabbing a military title if they haven’t been through boot camp.

Poor guy. I say “poor” because you have to be suffering from very low self-esteem to blow yourself up into a decorated veteran.

Not sure what the penalty will be, but maybe he should really be sent to boot camp. Either that, or shine the shoes of all the authentic decorated veterans out there.

Did you ever get busted pretending to be someone or something you are not?
Did it result in felony fraud charges?


About Rynski

Writer, artist, performer who specializes in the weird, wacky and sometimes creepy. Learn more at
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4 Responses to Arizona man busted for pretending to be a Marine

  1. RADC MAXIMUS says:

    This fraud denigrates the sacrifice and honor of all of our true heros. Rynskis’ ideas sound pretty good, for starters…

  2. Michael C says:

    I illegally collected State Unemployment Benefits, instead of reporting becoming employed. I reported my misdeeds, yet; was found responsible for violating numerous Civil and Criminal Laws and sentenced to a Class 6 Felony: 4 years of probation (supervised), pay restitution of the full amount of what I had collected (3,800.) (without interest) and now having a felony on my records.

    To lie and steal, leads to nothing good. We all are responsible for what we do and say and we make poor choices which can affect our entire lives. Time allows us to change and do better and become honest and responsible. I have not lied since and I am blessed to be able to know that……….

  3. Michael C says:

    How about “Priests” who allege to be our spiritual leaders?

    How about Bush’s grand deception? How about those phony, lying, thieves who stole us blind and cancerized our economy?

    Is it uncommon for people to steal another’s identity when they are trying to hide? We live in a Land of 1000 Dances out here……. WE adore Glamor. We become someone else because we don’t like ourselves. Some will say anything, just to be accepted. Time tells the truth.

  4. rabsy says:

    I worked with this guy! He kept up this lie the whole time and was pretty convincing with it. That is until he got sacked for lying.

    We had several ex-service men and women at that company, including a few marines, and no-one ever picked up on the fraud! I am an ex-British Serviceman so had no frame of reference and was unable to see what were probably claringly obvious signs.

    I will say this though – it didn’t take the brains of a genius to see that he was full of BS! A more ‘flakier’ person I have yet to meet.

    I hope they absolutely throw the book at him and let this be a deterant to anyone else wanting to take credit for sacrafice others have to go throw with zero credit.

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