Are Imposters Posing as Navy SEALS? INSIDE EDITION Investigates
The U.S. Navy SEALs are the elite special forces unit that hunted down Osama bin Laden. They are the best of the best. But the FBI estimates that for every one SEAL there are three hundred imposters.
Charlie Andrews reportedly said he spent years as a Navy SEAL. A New York Times Sunday Magazine article recently described Andrews as a "hummer-driving former bull rider who spent six years as a Navy SEAL."
Today he is a professional jouster. That's right, he makes his living jousting on horseback at medieval fairs.
And this is how Andrews described himself in a video promoting an upcoming jousting reality show on the National Geographic Channel: "I've had a pretty intense career. Worked in Special Operations, worked in the SEALS."
But a U.S. Navy spokesman told INSIDE EDITION that Andrews's experience as a SEAL consisted of basic SEAL training since he never finished the grueling program, he has no right to call himself a SEAL.
INSIDE EDITION's Lisa Guerrero caught up with Andrews at a renaissance fair in Utah.
Guerrero said, "I'd like to ask you why you tell people you were a Navy SEAL when you weren't?
"I don't," said Andrews.
"Why did you tell the New York Times you were a SEAL?" asked Guerrero.
"I didn't," said Andrews.
But before Guerrero could ask Andrews any more questions, a man who said he was festival security grabbed the camera and pushed the cameraman. Then as Guererro and her crew were trying to leave, the man smashed out the rear window of INSIDE EDITION's vehicle.
When Guerrero asked the man his name, all he would say was, "Piss off!"
A representative for Andrews says he never told the New York Times he was SEAL and never promoted himself as a SEAL.
But INSIDE EDITION uncovered a videotaped deposition for a civil court proceeding in 2005, where Andrews was asked under oath, "You were a SEAL?"
"Yes," replied Andrews.
"There is no doubt that he claimed it, and that he never was," says Don Shipley an actual decorated former Navy SEAL. Today Shipley makes it his mission to expose phony SEALS.
Damon Garland is a former physician's assistant who allegedly called himself a SEAL for many years, apparently in an effort to pick up women.
"He told me he was a member of SEAL Team Six, " says ex-girlfriend Ruth Malina.
SEAL Team Six is the unit that killed Osama bin Laden. Garland did serve in the Navy, but he was never a SEAL.
INSIDE EDITION's Lisa Guerrero caught up with Garland as he left an Orlando courthouse.
"You've never claimed to anyone that you're a Navy SEAL?" asked Guerrero
"I don't," said Garland.
"Haven't you actually told people that your part of the elite SEAL Team Six?" asked Guerrero.
"No, I haven't," insisted Garland.
"For him to say that he hasn't told anyone, that's a complete lie," responded Malina.
Unfortunately, Shipley says these won't be the last men to try to grain respect and impress women by calling themselves Navy SEALS.
"They're clowns, they're the bottom of the barrel," said Shipley.