Two men were arrested after allegedly posing as U.S. marshals while vacationing at a Florida resort. Authorities said that Walter Wayne Brown Jr., 53, and Gary Brummett, 81, were both asked on separate occasions to wear a mask while they were staying at the Wyndham Deerfield Beach Resort.
According to the South Florida Sun-Sentinal, Brown got into an argument with the front desk attendant over the mask policy when he was checking in. He flashed what appeared to be a badge and said he was exempt from the requirement. He also displayed a laminated card which claimed he was medically exempt from having to wear a mask.
When he returned the next day to extend his stay, he was told again to wear a mask. He refused and then threatened to have the employee arrested.
The following day, Brummett went down to the desk to ask for a coffee. When he was told to wear a mask, he refused and pointed to a badge on his belt.
"Do you know what this means," he reportedly told a manager at the resort. "I'm a U.S. marshal and can have you arrested if you force me to wear a mask."
A hotel employee became suspicious and called the police. Officers arrived along with a U.S. marshal and found the two men eating in the resort's restaurant. When questioned, the men handed over "authentic appearing" badges that identified them as Cherokee Nation Marshals and identification cards that said they were members of the Aniyvwiya Tribal Nation.
Officials checked the personnel records of both the U.S. Marshals Service and the Cherokee Nation Marshal Service and learned that neither of the men had ever been employed by either service. The badges and ID cards were determined to be fake.
The two men were taken into custody and are facing charges of impersonating a federal officer.
Photo: Broward County Sheriff's Office