A civilian who was caught impersonating a US Soldier and living in the Special Forces barracks last year is a con artist with a rap sheet, according to authorities.
Caught in December of last year after being arrested for drunk driving, 20-year-old Triston Marquell Chase masqueraded as an EOD technician for 1st Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group for several months.
According to the Fayetteville Observer, Chase has six felony charges from 2014 , including identity theft, larceny of a firearm and other crimes.
Following Chase’s arrest, military officials have unraveled the story of how he took advantage of the poor oversight conditions in the SF barracks, even being issued a key card and leading soldiers in corrective training- all incidents documented in a 100-page investigative report written by the Special Operations Command.
“Due to force protection of our soldiers, we are not allowed to discuss specifics concerning this particular section and their activities,” the U.S. Army Special Operations Command Public Affairs Office said.
Chase lived in the barracks for months, borrowing everything from equipment to cars as he assumed the role of a NCO in the barracks.
Chase’s fantasy came to an end when Military Police were making a traffic stop on another vehicle in December. Driving up to the MPs, he introduced himself as a barracks NCO and was concerned his soldier was in trouble.
The Military Police took note of Chase, who was visibly intoxicated. After taking him into custody and seizing his vehicle, they found multiple fake IDs, none of them associated with the name the vehicle was registered to. During the process, MPs say that Chase was combative and disruptive.
Investigators later discovered that a soldier had felt sorry for what he thought was a homeless man and provided him the key card for his room, as well as food. Over time, Chase became a barracks staple, conducting room inspections and assigning rooms to soldiers.
Chase claims to have graduated in 2013 and later served as an engineer in the army. He was charged with driving while intoxicated; resisting, delaying or obstructing a police officer; open container; driving while license suspended; and underage consumption of alcohol while driving. He is scheduled to be arraigned on those charges in federal court in Fayetteville next month.