Even though he’s pleaded guilty and is sitting in jail, an impostor doctor busted in an undercover ABC15 investigation won’t stop lying about the circumstances of his arrest, according to a former fellow jail inmate.
Craig Allen Scherf also continues to grossly exaggerate his military service record and other personal information, the inmate said.
“I’ve met some pathological liars in my day, but no one as believable and as smart as he is,” said Brandon Haubrock, who ABC15 confirmed recently spent nearly two months with Scherf in Maricopa County jails. “It just makes you wonder when does the lying stop?”
Haubrock’s account of Scherf’s lies match the accounts of multiple other people reached by ABC15 who have dealt with Scherf over the years.
ABC15 is publishing and broadcasting Haubrock’s interview with ABC15 investigator Dave Biscobing about his conversations with Scherf because they highlight a continued pattern of dishonesty, which deeply concerns state prosecutors.
Scherf is scheduled to be sentenced on December 8. He is facing more than 12 years in prison after he pleaded guilty in August.
The arrest was prompted by an ABC15 investigation that exposed Scherf operating a medical clinic in downtown Tempe, where he offered a long list of services including Botox injections and human growth hormone.
ABC15 also uncovered that Scherf has long history of other illegal and bogus schemes. He was previously convicted for his role operating a marijuana "compassion club."
In a sentencing memo, prosecutors have recommended that the judge give Scherf at least 10 years in prison. A key reason: “His willingness to repeatedly mislead, misrepresent, and outright lie.”
In their interview, Haubrock told Biscobing that in jail Scherf continues to lie about the nature of his arrest.
HAUBROCK: “He said he was in there for a false business license, and made it sound like he was working for somebody else and that the license had lapsed and he knew nothing about it.”
BISCOBING: "What did he tell you about our story? Did he tell you how it got started?"
HAUBROCK: “He said that he dated, I think it was dated, one of (ABC15’s) producers briefly, and that he ran into her at the grocery store, and he had his work shirt on, and she saw the name of his business. They didn’t end things good…”
BISCOBING: “So she decided to go after him?”
HAUBROCK: “Yeah. And he said, ‘She found out, oh, I had a fake license and this wouldn’t have happened if it ended better 20 years ago.’”
ABC15 has spoken to dozens of Scherf’s victims and past acquaintances. Many said that Scherf constantly exaggerates his military career by saying he was a Navy SEAL, suffered injuries, and completed top secret missions.
Through his interview, Haubrock said that Scherf has continued to tell those lies in jail.
HAUBROCK: He said he got out of the military after like 27 years, in 2013 or something, and he had done all sorts of special operations with the Navy SEALS…He made it seem like he traveled around the world with the military and did some really top-secret missions.”
HAUBROCK: “He said he was on a mission and he was peeking around a corner and he got shot and it went, well it barely grazed his skull and missed his eye … and it did a circle around his head and came out the other side.”
BISCOBING: “Oh wow.”
HAUBROCK: “I was looking at him and was like you don’t even have a scar, and he said, ‘I had like 20 surgeries.”
According to court records, Scherf did serve in the Marine Corps between 1984 and 1987 and received an honorable discharge.
However, his short career as a Phoenix Police officer in the early 1990's wasn’t so honorable. Scherf was fired after two years because of his “dishonesty.”
Scherf's attorney, Garrett Smith, did not respond to a request for comment this week about Haubrock's interview.
ABC15's last correspondence with Smith was in August when he sent a fiery email after Biscobing sent Scherf a jail interview request.
"You are a liar. I never authorized you to meet with my client. I never even responded to your email. I've been informed by my client and the jail that ch 15 showed up and told him that I had authorized him to speak with me. That is blatantly untrue and is also very underhanded and Untrustworthy. So, for the official record, you were not to speak with my client without my presence and permission. That will save you any more trips to the jail to attempt to trick him into speaking to you," Smith wrote.
Smith's claims were false.
ABC15 never showed up at the jail, and the station's only correspondence with Scherf and jail officials to request the interview was a single email: "ABC15 is requesting an interview with inmate Craig Allen Scherf (DOB [redacted]). Thank you."
Smith did not respond to additional questions about whether Scherf lied to him about ABC15's interview request.
Note: ABC15 Investigator Dave Biscobing is currently investigating broader issues with identifying and stopping impostor health professionals. If you have a tip about an impostor contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.