Tim Poe, America's Got Talent singer, lied about being injured in Afghanistan, says Minnesota National Guard
It looks like America's Got Talent favorite Tim Poe is a bit of a con artist.
According to a statement issued by the Minnesota National Guard yesterday, Poe was not injured by a grenade while serving in Afghanistan in 2009 as the singer claimed on the popular TV show Monday night.
Poe indeed served as a supply specialist in the Minnesota Army National Guard from December 2002 until May 2011. His military records also indicate that he served with the Minnesota National Guard in Kosovo from October 2007 until July 2008, and that he was deployed to Afghanistan from July to August 2009. But he wasn't wounded in combat.
"Sgt. Poe's official military records do not indicate that he was injured by a grenade in combat while serving in Afghanistan in 2009, as he reports," reads the Minnesota National Guard's statement. "The Minnesota National Guard can also confirm that he was not awarded the Purple Heart Medal for wounds sustained in combat."
Poe wowed America's Got Talent fans Monday night with a rendition of Garth Brooks' "If Tomorrow Never Comes." He told judges that he had survived a near-fatal grenade explosion in Afghanistan.
"It broke my back and gave me a brain injury," he said.
The Minnesota National Guard got wind of something fishy while routinely monitoring the Internet for mention of the military and the Minnesota National Guard.
"There are a number of blog posts that we monitor, and former soldiers who were in Sgt. Poe's unit felt that something wasn't quite right and weighed in via social media," says Minnesota National Guard spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Kevin Olson.
A search of Facebook revealed this discussion on an informal army forum called "U.S. Army W.T.F! Moments":
An army Facebook dialog about Tim Poe's combat claims.
After becoming aware of the dispute, the National Guard examined military records and concluded Poe's claims on national television were indeed false.
America's Got Talent did not respond to a request for comment.
Here's a video of Poe on America's Got Talent on Monday night:
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss City Pages' biggest stories.
- A terrible Minneapolis park deal just got $2 million worse
Sat., Sep. 19, 12:00am
Sat., Sep. 19, 7:00pm
Sun., Sep. 20, 12:00pm
Sat., Sep. 26, 2:30pm
- Why you should never run over a kid while flying a confederate flag
- Minnesota has eighth most expensive cigarettes