LUGOFF, SC (FOX 46 WJZY) - What happens when someone who claims to be military is busted for being a fraud?
"It's like you're not slapping not only us in the face but our fallen comrades," said veteran Anthony Anderson.
Well, there's a chance that person might be the newest addition to Anderson's website.
"Stolen Valor comes in many shapes and forms and the reasons are just as many," he said.
There are federal laws against stolen valor. Tune in to FOX 46 Charlotte tonight at 10 to see why Anderson says, he's doing his part, as the Guardian of Valor.
His inbox is flooded with requests to investigate stolen valor cases-- cases he takes on, free of charge.
"Right now there's 5,405 unread emails,” he said.
This is how it works: Whistle blowers send tips, sometimes video evidence. Anderson says, he doesn't post the videos until he's 100 percent certain that he's caught a phony. Disrespect for the uniform is something he will not allow.
"We've got them to where they'll just go in the airport to put on a uniform and have people walk up and say 'Thank you for your service.’ And then we have those that go as far as to actually steal money from the VA, from different organizations."
It's a federal crime to fraudulently claim a valor award with the intention of obtaining money, property or some sort of tangible benefit.
Thanks to Anderson, laws are tougher against people with stolen valor, but arrests pale in comparison to honoring the sacrifices of those who serve.
"It was a mother of a fallen soldier and she told me that I was protecting her son's honor and hearing that from a mother who had lost her son meant more to me than anything,’ he said.