The man accused of stabbing five people during a Dec. 28 Hanukkah celebration was discharged from Marine Corps boot camp in 2002.
Grafton Thomas, 38. has been charged with attempted murder and hate crimes for allegedly breaking into the home of a rabbi in the Monsey, New York, while he was hosting a large Hanukkah celebration.
Thomas allegedly was swinging an 18-inch machete and caused serious injury to five people.
Shortly after his arrest, Thomas’ attorney Michael Sussman told reporters that Thomas briefly served in the Marine Corps.
A Marine Corps sergeant major was indicted on hate crime and assault charges following an attack on a server at an Iraqi restaurant.
However, the Marine Corps later said Thomas was separated during boot camp, never earning the coveted Eagle, Globe and Anchor and the title Marine.
BuzzFeed first reported that Thomas was only at boot camp about a month before being separated for fraudulent enlistment.
Thomas started boot camp Nov. 20, 2002, and was discharged Dec. 24, 2002, Marine Corps spokeswoman Capt. Karoline Foote, told Task & Purpose Dec. 31, but she did not give them the reason for the discharge as it was “administrative in nature.”
During a Jan. 2 conference call with reporters Sussman disputed the discharge date provided by the Marine Corps and the reason for discharge.
Sussman said that Thomas did leave for boot camp in November 2002, but said that Thomas was not discharged until sometime between his 60th and 90th day there, based on the records he had seen.
Sussman said as far as he knew, Thomas was discharged for a broken wrist and trace amounts of marijuana discovered in his system after a drug test.
Yvonne Carlock, a spokeswoman with Marine Corps Manpower, confirmed the Nov. 20, 2002, to Dec. 24, 2002, dates to Marine Corps Times in a Jan. 2 phone call, after reviewing his discharge documents.