MILLBURY MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO “STOLEN VALOR” CHARGE
WORCESTER, Mass. - A Millbury man was convicted today in federal court of wearing combat decorations, including the Purple Heart and Bronze Star with combat “V,” that he did not earn.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz, Warren T. Bamford, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation - Boston Field Division and Chief Gary Gemme of the Worcester Police Department announced today that MICHAEL P. FRISOLI, 46, of Millbury, Mass. pleaded guilty before Magistrate Judge Timothy S. Hillman to an Information charging him with one count of wearing unauthorized military decorations under the Stolen Valor Act.
At today’s plea hearing the prosecutor told the Court that had the case proceeded to trial the Government’s evidence would have proven that between June and October 2008, FRISOLI purported to be a U.S. Marine First Sergeant who had earned multiple awards for valor in combat, including the Purple Heart, Bronze Star with “V”; Navy Commendation Medal with “V”; Army Commendation Medal with “V”; Navy/Marine Corps Combat Action Ribbon; and numerous other individual and unit awards that he did not earn. During the relevant time period FRISOLI appeared at various public events in uniform wearing these decorations, posing for photographs with state and local officials. He also appeared at a Millbury Board of Selectman’s meeting on June 24, 2008 at which he received a plaque from the town in recognition of his service and his work for Toys for Tots.
“Those who falsely claim to have earned prestigious awards like the Purple Heart and Bronze Star undermine the public’s respect and admiration for those men and women who honorably serve our country in the Armed Services,” said U.S. Attorney Ortiz.
Sentencing has been scheduled for August 5, 2010 at 10:00 a.m. FRISOLI faces up to one year imprisonment, to be followed by one year of supervised release and a $100,000 fine.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Massachusetts State Police and Worcester Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony E. Fuller of Ortiz’s Public Corruption and Special Prosecutions Unit.