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Latino Daily News

Monday June 27, 2011

Man Pretends to Be U.S. Soldier to Get Special Treatment on Airplane

Man Pretends to Be U.S. Soldier to Get Special Treatment on Airplane

Photo: Man Pretends to Be U.S. Soldier to Get Special Treatment on Airplane

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A wannabe G.I. Joe is in serious trouble after authorities say he pretended to be a U.S. soldier to get special treatment.

On Friday, Rock Diaz, 22, entered a Dominican Republic airport on his way home to Long Island. He was wearing camouflage fatigues and a cap over a military-style haircut. Wanting to do something nice for an Army service member, an airport worker upgraded him to first class. He happily accepted the upgrade and boarded the plane.

Upon arriving at JFK airport, he came across a customs agent that noticed something was off with the supposed solider. The agent asked Diaz his rank, to which he replied “E-5,” referring to his pay grade. However, his uniform had the insignia of a staff sergeant, and E-6. The agent then asked the man where he was stationed, and Diaz failed to answer.

Image“If you knew anything about the military and you looked at him, you could tell he wasn’t really a soldier,” a cop said.

Still, Diaz claimed he was indeed a member of the U.S. Army.

Upon closer inspection by officers, Diaz’s uniform was sadly comical. Not only had he stated a rank different from what his uniform indicated, but he also wore a POW (prisoner of war) patch in the wrong place, and the dog tags he wore were emblazoned with “USA Marines Corp.” which is completely wrong.

When confronted, Diaz admitted he had used the fake uniform to receive special treatment once before. That time he managed to land a viewing of a jet cockpit.

However, the phony commando blames the stewardess and a language barrier for the “mistake” in the upgraded seat.

“I never asked to get upgraded. The stewardess offered me a new seat and I asked why? They explained it to me in English and I did not understand,” Diaz told The New York Post Sunday. “I moved where they told me to sit.”

Diaz has been charged with second-degree impersonation.


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