Monday, January 30, 2023


June 8, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

For years, producers of reality shows have promised to do a better job of vetting contestants after news reports have revealed that several of those contestants have lied about their past. In 2009, a contestant on a VH1 reality series turned out to have been a murder suspect. He later committed suicide. The latest scandal involves a contestant on America’s Got Talent. During an audition taping, the man, a country singer named Tim Poe, told a story of how he suffered permanent injuries from a blast in Afghanistan. The show showed a photo of the man in uniform. On Thursday, it was disclosed that Poe’s military records gave no indication that he had been injured. Moreover, the picture that was displayed was actually that of Sgt. Norman Bone. The show later removed the photo from its website and apologized to Bone. Earlier Bone had contacted the website TMZ, outraged that Poe had used his photo. “Why would this lying son of a bitch do this?” he asked. Poe had presumably downloaded the photo from the Department of Defense website, where it was captioned: “U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Norman Bone directs movement as his patrol turns around on a narrow path in the mountains of Parwan province in Afghanistan on Oct. 25, 2006.”

UPDATE: Poe has now told the New York Post that things “may not have happened exactly like I said it did.” He continued to maintain, however, that he suffers mental lapses as a result of an injury he received in conflict and produced a military document that confirms that he received an “injury or disease … in the line of duty as a direct result of armed conflict.” An Army spokesperson told the newspaper that his military records are incomplete. Poe further acknowledged that he did not tell the truth when he said that he had never sung before, saying that he had previously been in a band. “I would like to take the time to tell the American people how truly sorry I am that they had to endure the incomplete facts,” he said.