View Full Version : Gregory C. Banks Clinical Psychologist and Special Forces Fraud

Team Sergeant
02-11-2014, 11:04
The folks at "This Ain't Hell" (http://thisainthell.us/blog/?p=39745) sent me this one today..... I think Greg Banks of Gregory Banks Counseling LLC, in Danbury, CT requires a bit more attention.

Greg Banks, Special Forces Liar and Fraud

Man accused of posing as decorated special forces soldier

Posted: Feb 10, 2014 11:11 AM
Updated: Feb 11, 2014 5:24 AM
By Eric Parker - email
By Joseph Wenzel IV, News Editor - email

A man has claimed to be a major for the special forces in the United States Army and received awards for his service.

However, an investigation by Eyewitness News shows that no records of the man's military service, so the I-team went to look for answers.

"He said he was a special forces major and was stopping through. He was back from deployment for a couple weeks, problem solving overseas," said a man, who asked Eyewitness News to conceal his identity because the accusations he's making are explosive, and he worries for his safety.

According to this man, another man, by the name of Greg Banks, was coming to the Mason's Hall in Danbury every few weeks. Banks would eventually show up one day in his dress blues with some awfully impressive medals.

"He walks in bronze star, purple heart, dress blues," the man told Eyewitness News.

The man added that he thought "something was not right."

"He gets all these awards all the sudden, he has a purple heart after being away for a couple weeks," the man said. "What happened?"

The tipster told Eyewitness News that he started checking into Banks. He looked at official records, searched online, and talked to friends who actually are special forces. There was no record of the man, who identified himself to the Mason's as Brother Greg Banks.

There were other red flags, according to Eyewitness News' source.

"He was wearing the wrong color beret. He was wearing it incorrectly," the man said. "He had awards on his chest that didn't make any sense."

Convinced Banks wasn't in the military at all, he reached out through an associate to the I-Team and the station started digging. Eyewitness News' request to The Pentagon for any military records for Gregory C. Banks came up empty. There's no record of a soldier by that name.

Then, just like the tipster, Eyewitness News quickly found a totally separate set of records for a Greg Banks. A man by the same name is licensed in Connecticut as a professional counselor. An online listing of therapists shows his picture and said he works with children and adults. He also has special training in helping clients deal with traumatic experiences.

"That's the name he used when he was wearing the uniform, 100 percent," the man said.

The tipster went onto say that the man, who was visiting the Mason's Hall, looked "absolutely" like the man in the pictures of the counselor Gregory Banks.

"I'd swear under oath that this was the same guy," the man said.

The I-Team went looking for answers. At the Danbury office for Gregory Banks Counseling LLC, no one was there. Eyewitness News slipped a note under the locked door.

Then I-Team went to the Brookfield home listed as the residence address for that business. No one was home.

Finally, I-Team stopped at the Farmington address listed on bank's website. He wasn't there, either. However, when shown the picture of Banks, people nearby said "he's very definitely in the military," but could not tell the station what he did.

The I-Team also sent emails to Banks, left him multiple voice messages, and even called the lawyer he used in his 2012 divorce. No one called back.

A review of the public records from that divorce show no mention of Banks being in the military. He told the masons, and even accepted awards for his service, but apparently didn't mention his work with the special forces to his spouse.

The man, who brought this claim to the I-team said he just wants Banks to "stop it."

"You're dishonoring every single person who took a bullet for this country and it's got to stop," the man added.

The tipster and some of the people he contacted reached out to the state Department of Health, they've asked them to launch an investigation. The I-Team investigation is continuing too.

If you know anything more about Greg Banks, the I-team would like to hear from you. Just fill out the form, by clicking here.

Copyright 2014 WFSB (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.


Team Sergeant
02-11-2014, 11:27
Danbury counselor an alleged military imposter
John Pirro
Updated 11:56 pm, Monday, February 10, 2014
DANBURY -- On his web page, Gregory C. Banks identifies himself as a clinical psychologist with offices in Danbury and Farmington who counsels, among others, those suffering from post-traumatic-stress disorder, including military veterans and police officers.

When Banks showed up at Masonic Lodge meetings in Danbury and Massachusetts in recent years, he frequently wore the uniform and medals of a decorated active-duty Special Forces major in the U.S. Army, and accepted the accolades and free dinners from lodge brothers grateful for his service to the nation.

Earlier this month, however, the 41-year-old Banks received recognition of a far different sort.

His name and photographs appeared on the website of an organization that specializes in exposing people who falsely claim to have served in the armed forces, an offense that not only raises the ire of true veterans but in some cases can be prosecuted under the federal Stolen Valor Act, passed by Congress and signed into law by President Barack Obama last year.

"There's no doubt about it, he's perpetrating a fraud," said Terence Hoey, a retired master chief petty officer in the Navy and a regular contributor to website This Ain't Hell, But You Can See It From Here, who helped unmask Bank's alleged deception.

"We in the veterans' community don't give these guys an inch, and we will go to great lengths to expose them," Hoey said. "The No. 1 remedy for stolen valor is the truth, and we are truth seekers."

A search of military records initiated recently by one of Banks' fellow Masons revealed that no one with his name and birth date was currently serving in the military.

"We have conducted extensive searches of every records source and alternate records source at this center; however, we have been unable to locate any information that would help us verify the veteran's military service," Michael Harris, an archives technician at the National Personnel Records Center in Missouri, wrote in a Dec. 13 letter.

Banks on Monday refused to speak to The News-Times about the allegations.

When a reporter went to Bank's office on North Street, a man who wouldn't give his name, accused him of "harassing us all day," referring to three phone messages left on answering machines at the counselor's two offices and at his home in Brookfield.

Told that Banks was accused of falsely claiming to be in the service and portraying himself as an active-duty Army officer, the man said, "That's no longer accurate," but wouldn't elaborate and called 911. Police responded, but declined to take any action.

Banks began showing up at the Union 40 lodge in Danbury about a year ago, wearing camouflage fatigues and claiming he recently returned from deployment and "had business at West Point," where he happened to see a notice about the meeting.

Being a Mason, Banks decided to drop by, said Ken Baylor, a lodge member who eventually grew suspicious about his story.

To those who inquired about his service, Banks would usually reply that he "was a problem-solver" currently on active duty, but he offered only a few other specifics, Baylor said.

The tip-off came in early December when he showed up at the lodge in his Army dress blues wearing a Purple Heart, Bronze Star and a combat infantryman's badge.

To Baylor, a non-veteran familiar with military apparel from his high school ROTC days and from friends currently in the service, including some in the very units that Banks claimed to have been with, things seemed off.

"His jacket didn't fit properly, and his beret was wrong," Baylor said. "He was wearing a black one, which is improper for the Special Forces, and it looked like a muffin top. Any soldier would know how to wear one."

His Army friends told Baylor there was no major in their unit by the name of Greg Banks, prompting him to file a Freedom of Information request with the personnel records center.

A simple Internet search revealed that Banks, who'd mentioned he worked as a psychologist, had a practice in Danbury, Baylor said.

Baylor also checked the website of the King Hiram's Masonic Lodge in Provincetown, Mass., where Banks had been a member for nine years, which identified Banks as a lodge chaplain and assistant treasurer and featured numerous articles lauding him for his service and pictures of him in his dress uniform.

Those postings have been taken down since Bank's deception was discovered, Baylor said.

Ralph Desmond, the Worshipful Master at King Hiram's Lodge, refused to discuss the matter with The News-Times.

"Lodge business is lodge business," Desmond said, adding he would discipline any of his members who discussed the issue.

Once he was confident of his findings, Baylor forwarded the information to This Ain't Hell, and Hoey and John Lilyea, a retired infantry sergeant, verified his information and posted it. The posting has drawn hundreds of comments from angry veterans.

Numerous attempts to contact Banks were unsuccessful, although they were contacted by a man who claimed to be Banks' representative who offered to surrender the uniforms, minus the name tags, a deal the veterans rejected, Hoey said.

"Since the police won't usually prosecute, we're the stocks and dunking chair in the public square," Lilyea said. "The only thing we can do is shame these guys."

Tony Anderson, who runs a similar website, Guardian of Valor, said he has seen a steady increase in the number of false service claims since he set it up three years ago.

"From someone dressing up in a uniform and going to the airport to get `atta boys,' to the ones who use it to gain financially and even create companies on the fraudulent claims, I get anywhere between 15 and 20 reports per day, with about 50 percent being actual false claims," Anderson said.

But criminal prosecutions are rare, unless there has been financial gain, he said.

"It is hard to get someone prosecuted under the new Stolen Valor Act unless another crime has been committed along with it, although when we get enough evidence, we submit it to the proper authorities, hoping they will follow through," Anderson said.

Baylor said the Banks case has angered many members of the lodge, because the Masons -- despite a historic reputation for secrecy -- are men who pride themselves on having a good reputation and doing good works for the community.

"It really rubbed me the wrong way, especially since I have a nephew who's deployed in Afghanistan," said Steve Andresen, a Union 40 member who lives in New Fairfield.

"I think it's disrespectful to the people who risk their lives to earn those medals and commendations," he said.

Banks has since been suspended by both the Connecticut and Massachusetts grand lodges, Baylor said.

jpirro@newstimes.com; 203-731-3342; twitter.com/johnpirro


Team Sergeant
02-11-2014, 11:32
So let me get this right, it's OK for a licensed clinical psychologist to pretend to be a decorated Special Forces soldier but if I were to pretend to be a clinical psychologist I'd be put in jail.

Just wanted to get that straight.

Team Sergeant
02-11-2014, 11:51
Gregory C. Banks Clinical Psychologist he also specializes in military frauds, lying and playing dress-up. Would you bring your children to this "physician"?

Mr. Gregory Banks

Counselor , MA , LPC , NCC

(860) 253-2412

verified by Psychology Today

I provide professional counseling and life coaching services for children and adults in individual, couples and family settings. I am experienced in working with a wide range of mental health issues and life changes. I have additional specialty training to assist clients who are recovering from traumatic experiences.

I work hard to offer an open and accepting environment to facilitate positive change in the lives of my clients. Clients of every age, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, and gender identity are welcome.

I earned my Masters of Arts degree in Counseling Psychology from Antioch New England Graduate School. I am a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) in the State of Connecticut. I also hold the National Certified Counselor (NCC) credential.

http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/name/Gregory_Banks_MA,LPC,NCC_Farmington_Connecticut_44 518