PORTLAND, Ore. — The man exposed as a military impostor in a KGW investigation has been arrested for unrelated crimes.
Michele Bocci was booked into the Washington County jail Tuesday night. Tualatin Police arrested Bocci for stalking and theft, both are misdemeanor crimes.
According to prosecutors, the Washington County District Attorney’s office decided not to file charges at this time. They can reconsider later.
Bocci has been released from jail.
“There was not enough evidence to proceed on the incidents of stalking and theft that were reported to us,” explained Matthew Hall, a deputy district attorney in Washington County.
Bocci is also trying to change his name. He filed court papers in Yamhill County on Tuesday, requesting that a judge allow him to legally change his name from Michele Bocci to Michael McDougal.
A hearing has been scheduled for February 15 to consider the change.
Bocci claimed he was a combat veteran; a U.S. Marine who was left to care for his two young children after his wife died in childbirth. A KGW investigation found more than two dozen people, including members of community groups, churches and police agencies, who reached out to help Bocci. They provided money, food or other types of assistance.
Read original investigation: Oregon man claims to be veteran with sad story
The U.S. Department of Defense confirmed Bocci never served in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Police in Tualatin and West Linn confirm officers have received reports about Bocci’s misleading statements but they don’t believe any crime has been committed under Oregon law.
The case may fall under the Stolen Valor Act of 2013. Federal law makes it a crime for a person to lie about their military service with the intention of getting money, property of any other tangible benefit.
The U.S. Department of Defense is investigating.
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