A challenge to the Stolen Valor Act is being made based on the First Amendment.
Rick Strandlof may have lied about being a decorated Iraq War veteran, but those lies are protected by the First Amendment, according to his attorney and a civil liberties organization.
Strandlof, 32, is charged in U.S. District Court in Denver with five misdemeanors related to violating the Stolen Valor Act — specifically, making false claims about receiving military decorations.
He is accused of posing as "Rick Duncan," a wounded Marine captain who received a Purple Heart and a Silver Star. Strandlof used that persona to found the Colorado Veterans Alliance and solicit funds for the organization.
On Tuesday, the Rutherford Institute, a nonprofit civil liberties group based in Virginia, filed a friend-of-the-court brief in Strandlof’s case attacking the constitutionality of the Stolen Valor Act.