PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. – A Florida man who passed himself off as a war hero and applied for a job with the city of Port St. Lucie was arrested after it was discovered that he never served in the military, police said.
Edward Liroff, 46, was arrested Tuesday on felony charges of fraudulently obtaining a Florida driver's license, uttering a forged instrument and unlawful use of uniforms, medals or insignia.
Port St. Lucie police Sgt. Frank Sabol said an investigation began March 8 after Mike Lubek, the city's assistant director of neighborhood services, received a questionable employment application for a code compliance specialist position.
Lubek said Liroff's application included a DD214 form, which is issued upon a military service member's retirement, separation or discharge from active duty.
The form stated that Liroff served in the U.S. military from 1988 to 2004 and listed that he had been the recipient of, among other things, a Distinguished Service Medal, a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star.
Unfamiliar with the form, Lubek asked Port St. Lucie police Officer Joseph Byrne, a military veteran, to review the document.
Byrne noticed several irregularities on the form and concluded that Liroff never served in the military.
Among the discrepancies Byrne noted were that the Distinguished Service Medal was only awarded to four U.S. Army soldiers between 1983 and 2013 -- Liroff was not among them -- and that his Silver Star Medal was spelled incorrectly.
Byrne also discovered that Liroff was registered as a veteran with the Department of Veterans Affairs and had been receiving health care from the VA.
A warrant was issued for Liroff's arrest and he was booked into the county jail.
Lifoff is also expected to face federal charges.