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Military men question mayoral candidate's service - KTBS.com - Shreveport, LA News, Weather and Sports

Military men question mayoral candidate's service

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SHREVEPORT, La -

Is a man who announced his run for Shreveport Mayor falsely portraying himself as a war veteran? Some eagle-eyed vets contacted us after Melvin Slack's photo-op on Monday.

"It's all wrong," says Louisiana Army National Guard SSgt. Danny Stutzman, looking at a picture of Slack in the jumbled military fatigue outfit he wore on Monday when he announced his mayoral run.

"He's wearing an Air Force camo print, this is what we call Tiger Stripe," Stutzman said, pointing to the detail on Slack's fatigues.

Yet on that Air Force issue, Stutzman says Slack has Army name tapes -- on both sides -- which is also wrong.

"This one should say Air Force," says Stutzman, pointing first to the tape on Slack's left chest. Then pointing to the right, he adds, "This one should have his name on it."

Stutzman says slack has a mix of different Army and Air Force patches that are also wrong, including the American Flag.

"This is the flag on the wrong sleeve," Stutzman points out. "If you're Army, it should be on the right sleeve."

It's topped off with a civilian Desert Storm Army Veteran cap, along with a civilian turtleneck -- other no-no's while wearing a military uniform.

"You can buy stuff like this at surplus stores," Stutzman says of Slack's uniform. "It really looks like he went to like an alterations shop and just stuck his hand in the grab bin and pulled out what he could."

Stutzman, who deployed twice to Iraq, and his military buddies, are up in arms.

"I know brothers who've died wearing the uniform. And to me he's kind of spitting on their memory in the way he's wearing it," Stutzman fumes.

Slack has not returned repeated phone calls the last two days, nor has he been home to answer the door when we've knocked.

A small, flimsy sign stuck in the ground at his home on Pines road says it's the nationwide headquarters for his prison, street, and nursing home ministry. American and Louisiana flags fly at the home, and there are two small statues of a soldier on bended knee with a cross.

The Air Force says it has no record of Slack's service. But the Army says he enlisted in 1989 and was assigned as a motor transportation officer. But they've not yet told us how he separated from the Army.

On Tuesday, the day after Slack announced his candidacy, he pleaded not guilty in Shreveport city court for a charge of domestic abuse battery. Records show the incident happened in November of 2012.

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