Men and women have served valiantly to defend our country. How could someone stoop so low and steal another’s valor?
Now steps in a man from Tampa Florida who was recently arrested for posing as a veteran U.S. naval officer and former member of legendary SEAL Team Six while aggressively soliciting money from grocery store patrons for a fake veterans charity.
Freemane Brown, the 54-year-old imposter, caught the attention of a few deputies of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office after they noticed that some of the 21 ribbons and badges on his uniform were not military regulation.
Included on his chest was the coveted Navy Cross and Silver Star, along with a Navy SEAL trident, accompanied by jump wings.
After being questioned, the valor thief began to recant his story about serving on SEAL Team Six and eventually admitted that he was never a naval officer, let alone one with so many decorations.
The manager of the grocery store gave him permission to solicit donations for his fake charity based on his uniform and his word, as she didn’t know any better.
He later admitted to deputies that he purchased his medals and ribbons from a nearby military surplus store.
Along with having his military uniform, ribbons and medals confiscated, Brown was arrested for felony unlawful use of uniforms, medals or insignia, and a judge set his bail at $2,000.
His extreme claims are a disgrace to those who have worn the uniform because they actually earned it with blood, sweat, tears and sometimes even their lives. It’s too bad he won’t be punished more severely.
As you can see in the photo, Freemane was wearing the SEAL Trident, Silver Star and the Purple Heart among a ton of other decorations. Guardian of Valor checked with sources and confirmed he has never served in the Navy, and certainly was never a member of DEVGRU, more commonly known as SEAL Team 6.
Under Florida law it is a Felony to impersonate a Veteran or member of the Military to solicit donations. So now he gets to enjoy three hots and a cot.
Too bad the court couldn’t sentence him to serve in our military, but he isn’t fit.