El Paso Police Say 'Hero' Honored By White House For Walmart Shooting Is A Fraud
El Paso, TX – An El Paso Walmart mass shooting victim who claimed to have heroically created a diversion to help others escape the gunman lied about what occurred and did nothing more than save himself, according to police.
Earnest “Chris” Grant, 50, was one of 11 people recognized by President Donald Trump for their actions during the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, ABC News reported.
During Monday’s ceremony at the White House, the President presented Grant’s mother with a certificate of commendation, which she accepted on her son’s behalf.
“Chris grabbed – listen to this – soda bottles, and anything else in front of him, and began hurling them at the gunman, distracting him from the other shoppers and causing the shooter to turn towards Chris and fire at him,” President Trump told those in attendance, according to ABC News. “Chris suffered two very serious gunshot wounds but he is recovering well and we wish him the best.”
“His family is here,” the President added, according to the Washington Examiner. “Please thank Chris for us.”
Grant wasn’t able to make it to the award ceremony because he was detained by the U.S. Secret Service on an outstanding fugitive warrant when he showed up in Washington, ABC News reported.
Officers ultimately determined that although “the arrest warrant was still active, the agency that issued the warrant would not extradite,” the Washington Examiner reported.
Grant was then released from Secret Service custody.
In the meantime, word that his supposed heroic actions during the Aug. 3 mass shooting were a complete farce began to spread.
“Nobody bothered to check with us," El Paso Police Sergeant Enrique Carrillo told the Washington Examiner. "They would have been informed, as I am telling you now, that our detectives reviewed hours of video and his actions did not match his account."
“The video evidence of the scene does not support his assertions,” Sgt. Carrillo told KFOX. “His actions were captured by surveillance cameras, but they amount to an act of self-preservation, nothing more, nothing less.”
The White House later dropped Grant’s name from the list of event honorees, ABC News reported.
Grant also has a criminal history out of Texas, according to the Washington Examiner.
In 2016, he was sentenced to 18 days in jail for stealing televisions from a Sears store. He was also convicted of evading arrest that same year.
In March, he was convicted of stealing a 2009 Mazda 6, and was sentenced to eight months in prison, the Washington Examiner reported.
It is unclear how many months of that sentence he actually served.
Grant began touting his supposedly heroic actions during a series of interviews in the wake of the mass shooting.
He gave some of those interviews from his hospital bed.
“To deter him, I started just chucking bottles, I just started throwing bottles, random bottles at him," Grant told CNN. "And I'm not a baseball player, so one went this way, one went that way. And then one went right towards him and then that's when he saw me.”
“When I got hit, it was like somebody put a hand grenade in my back and pulled the pin,” said Grant, who was shot in the kidney and ribs, according to the Washington Examiner.
During his interview with CNN, Grant said that he didn’t think the actions he supposedly took during the encounter were remarkable.
“I think a lot of men would’ve done that,” he said. “It says that my father raised me that way. My father raised me to help people…I mean, we’re men. That’s what men do, right?”
“I did what any good man would’ve done,” he added. “I can’t take credit for anything.”
Grant’s GoFundMe account remained active on Thursday, and has raised nearly $17,000.