Michael Delos Hamilton was a guest speaker at a Vietnam Veterans’ memorial ceremony. He distributed an autobiography which described him as an incredibly motivated Marine who, during an eight year career went from private first class to colonel. Also saying that he participated in secret operations in Vietnam, Laos, and Columbia, and claimed to have received many decorations including multiple Navy Crosses, Silver Stars, Purple Hearts. Because of the incredible-ness of this story, a criminal investigation was initiated.
The investigation led to the additional discovery that Hamilton had also fraudulently collected over $30,000 in undeserved disability payments, and of course, wearing the medals and uniform of a highly decorated Marine colonel without authorization.
Hamilton filed a motion to dismiss the charges of unauthorized wearing of medals and an officer’s uniform, but with a news photo of him in the get-up as proof, the motion was denied. Hamilton’s trial is this month, April, 2011.
Photo thanks to Levi Escobar under creative common license on Flickr.