Local News

Authorities seek help finding Cameron man who poses as soldier

Posted May 15, 2013

— Cumberland County detectives are searching for people who may have given money to a 39-year-old Cameron man posing as a soldier or government official. 

According to the sheriff's office, James Edward Coombs, of 1203 Heritage Way, is believed to have posed as a Fort Bragg Special Forces officer, Sgt. 1st Class soldier or Federal Air Marshal in order to ask people for money. 

Investigators say Coombs approaches people, tells them his wallet was stolen and he doesn't have enough money to get back to the military base. 

Coombs is known to frequent the Walmart on Skibo Road in Fayetteville, and he has been arrested at multiple rest stops along Interstate 95 while pandering in a military uniform. 

Coombs has previously been arrested for possession of a stolen car and credit cards, drug charges, fraud, forgery and disorderly conduct, authorities said.

Anyone who may have been victimized by Coombs should call the Cumberland County Sheriff's Office at 910-323-1500.


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  • For the U.S.A. May 15, 2013

    He was in the Dunn-Falcon-Godwin area on 05-14-2013. Saw him leaving Dunn on I-95 South.

  • 426X3 May 15, 2013

    If he keeps it up especially in Fayetteville, a real solider/airman may just adjust his attitude a little bit.

  • michaelclay May 15, 2013

    Yes lisa4, "Give this man a real uniform" - an orange uniform with prison id numbers!!!

  • ctkane May 15, 2013

    This guy approached us a couple of years ago at the rest-stop on I-95 in Dunn where the Dairy Queen is. Same fatique-style of clothing (not offical military uniform) and same sob story...lost his wallet, his family is stuck up the road and they need to get back home.... Unfortunately, my husband went to the ATM and gave him $20 while we waited in the car. When he came back to the car afterwards, I said Good Job Honey, you just got scammed.... How sad you can't trust anyone anymore! Sad sad world we live in.

  • Obamacare survives May 15, 2013

    He looks very shifty.

  • sunshine1040 May 15, 2013

    He looks like a young trooper that has no idea where to get money to get back to Ft Bragg or the nearest recruiting station> NOT

  • amomsway May 15, 2013

    I was approached by this guy (will never forget his face) in the parking lot of Blockbuster off Yadkin Road in Fayetteville a few years ago when I was putting my daughter (then, an infant). He tried showing me his LES to prove that he was, in fact, a soldier. The minute he stepped towards me though, I threw my hands up and stepped back, told him I didn't have any money. He was wearing an Army PT t-shirt and green pants. Saw him again, wearing the same clothes, walking along a busy road in Hope Mills a few months after that.

  • dracarys7 May 15, 2013

    lisa4 said: "Give this man a real uniform & send him to "work" in the WAR ZONE!!!!! Let him see what the REAL MEN/WOMEN do when they put on their uniforms!!!!"

    Yes, he seems very trustworthy. Just the kind of person we need for the military.

  • lisa4 May 15, 2013

    Give this man a real uniform & send him to "work" in the WAR ZONE!!!!! Let him see what the REAL MEN/WOMEN do when they put on their uniforms!!!!