Christian Desgroux was sentenced to six months jail time and a year of supervised release by U.S. District Judge Terrence Boyle on Tuesday for impersonating an Army general.
Desgroux — a 58-year-old originally from Chile — became a U.S. citizen in 2016 and has lived around Ralieigh, North Carolina for many years. He was previously kicked out of strip clubs while wearing his Army general uniform and previously fooled his wife that he was leaving for periodic military missions, according to prosecutor Barbara Kocher, reports The Associated Press.
Desgroux hired a chartered helicopter pilot twice in 2017. One instance was on Nov. 6 in an attempt to impress a woman, claiming it was part of a request from President Donald Trump, The Washington Post reported in February.
The helicopter landed at the campus of the woman’s employer, where Desgroux saluted the security officers, Homeland Security special agent Tony Bell testified in February. However, suspicion rose among the security guards and they called the police. Federal agents were soon notified and began an investigation into possible terrorism, according to the AP.
“He liked the sense of importance he gained by masquerading as a general,” Kocher said, adding that Desgroux “has used this persona for years,” according to the AP. (RELATED: Florida Man Pretends To Be Cop While Trying To Pull Over Actual Police Officer)
Boyle instructed Desgroux to avoid alcohol and to pursue mental health care, according to the AP.
A mental health exam showed signs of alcoholism, a personality disorder and narcissistic traits, but it concluded that Desgroux does not have psychosis, according to the AP.
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