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Press Release

Man Charged with Impersonating an Officer Detained Following Initial Appearance

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Georgia

COLUMBUS, Ga. – A federal criminal complaint charging a Columbus resident with impersonating a federal agent was unsealed today.

Robert Earhart, Jr., 38, of Columbus, Georgia, had his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Court Judge Stephen Hyles at the U.S. Courthouse in Columbus today and was ordered detained by the Court. Earhart, Jr. is charged by criminal complaint with one count of false personation of an officer or employee of the United States. If convicted, Earhart, Jr. faces a maximum sentence of three years imprisonment to be followed by one year of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.

According to court proceedings and the criminal complaint, Earhart, Jr. allegedly left a voicemail with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Columbus on Jan. 11, identifying himself as a CIA Agent with the “protective operations division” with top security clearance and requesting a meeting with U.S. Attorney Peter Leary. Earhart, Jr. is also alleged to have represented himself as a Homeland Security agent. Earhart, Jr. has a history of impersonating law enforcement officers, including previously identifying himself as a DEA agent, when he attempted to free three inmates from the Muscogee County, Georgia, jail in May 2019. Earhart, Jr. was taken into custody by local law enforcement at the U.S. Courthouse in Columbus, on Feb. 8.

The case was investigated by the FBI, with valuable assistance from the U.S. Marshals Service and the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Amy Helmick is prosecuting the case.

A complaint is only an allegation of criminal conduct, and all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in a court of law beyond a reasonable doubt.

Updated March 17, 2023