A 43-year-old naval submarine commander found himself in over his head in an extramarital affair, and faked his own death to end the romance, according to military authorities.
Cmdr. Michael P. Ward II, who is married with children, allegedly met a 23-year-old Virginia woman, whose name has not been released, through a dating website last October, according to the New London Day. The 23-year-old says that Ward told her he was separated and working in "special ops."
She told the paper that Ward sent her emails under the name "Tony Moore," claiming that he had to communicate under a false name due to the nature of his work. She clarified that he did tell her his real name when they met in person.
In July, the woman allegedly received an ominous email, ostensibly from a man named "Bob," Fox News reports.
"[Ward] asked me to contact you if this ever happened," the email reads. "I am extremely sorry to tell you that he is gone. We tried everything we could to save him. I cannot say more. I am sorry it has to be this way."
He couldn't bail himself out that easily, however. The distraught woman drove out to Ward's home, where the new owner informed her that her ex-lover was alive, and had simply moved to Connecticut to assume command of a submarine, the USS Pittsburgh.
Shortly thereafter, the woman learned that she was pregnant, but says that she has since lost the child.
The woman ultimately contacted the Naval Investigative Service, turning over copies of text messages and emails that Ward allegedly had sent her.
On Aug. 10, the Navy relieved the commander of his duties "due to lack of confidence in Ward's ability to command based upon allegations of personal misconduct," according to a press release.
Ward, who first entered the Navy in 1987, has been reassigned to administrative duties while the Navy investigates the matter. He had been commanding officer of the USS Pittsburgh for only one week.
The Commander, however, is not the only person to be accused of faking his own death in recent months.
Just last week, 47-year-old Raymond Roth vanished from a New York beach, only to be found speeding on a South Carolina highway a few days later. His wife is convinced he was involved in an elaborate scheme to make it appear that he had died.
In May, California couple Santiago and Rosa Carrasco pleaded guilty to faking Santiago's demise in order to obtain death benefits. The pair even managed to keep the jig up for a whole 7 years, until an anonymous person ratted them out to the US government.
After catching her husband in bed with another woman, this Floridian allegedly went on a rifle-wielding rampage around the house before pooping on the floor. Police say that, when questioned about her choice of action, Schumann responded, "I found him in bed with a naked chick, what was I supposed to do?" <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/08/brenda-schumann-poop-floor-husband-woman_n_2432704.html">Read the whole story here.</a>
Michael P. Ward II
In this Aug. 3, 2012 photo provided by the U.S. Navy, Cmdr. Michael P. Ward II, center, is saluted during the change-of-command ceremony for the nuclear submarine, USS Pittsburgh, at the Naval Submarine Base New London, in Groton, Conn. Ward was relieved of his command later that month. A report obtained Tuesday, Sept. 18, 2012 by The Associated Press, through a Freedom of Information Act request, said Ward faked his own death to end an affair with a woman. (AP Photo/U.S. Navy, Jason J. Perry via The Day of New London)
Bobbie Jo Curtis
A week after Curtis, 40 and her 16-year-old son moved in with a Florida man she met on a dating website, Pasco County sheriff's deputies say the mom and teen tied down and beat up the boyfriend before robbing him. A neighbor who questioned why they were loading up their vehicle was allegedly hit in the head with a baseball bat.
Zaragoza, who's pregnant, allegedly stabbed her boyfriend because he was pouring her booze down the sink drain in their Mesa, Arizona home. She argued that she "accidentally" stabbed him when she turned to talk to him in the kitchen, but the victim disagrees. She was charged with aggravated assault.
This Sept. 6 2012 photo provided by the DFW Airport Department of Public Safety shows Christopher Shell. When flying home to Texas to celebrate his 29th birthday on Thursday, Shell became became the unwitting victim of a midair explosives hoax that forced the plane's return to Philadelphia. He was escorted off the aircraft at gunpoint, then cleared of any link to explosives. Later Thursday, Shell ended up getting arrested on outstanding warrants when the plane reached Dallas. (AP Photo/DFW Airport Department of Public Safety)
Seehaus allegedly told police that he robbed a 7-Eleven in Palm Bay, Fla. after his fiance refused to have sex with him.
Karoly is accused of choking her boyfriend because he refused to marry her so she could get a new Visa.
It was almost a kiss of death. Deputies in Florida say 92-year-old Helen Staudinger opened fire on her neighbor's house after the much younger resident refused to give her a kiss. Investigators at the Marion County Sheriff's Office claim Staudinger refused to leave 53-year-old Dwight Bettner unless her neighbor gave her a kiss. She allegedly returned with a gun.
Rogue cuddler Agustin Sanchez allegedly snuck into his ex-girlfriend's home and crawled into bed with her for a snuggle. The spooning attempt was thwarted, however, when the woman notified police. Read more <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/10/cuddle-break-in-augustin-sanchez_n_1196323.html" target="_hplink">here.</a>
Nikolas Harbar and Stephanie Pelzner
Portland, Ore. couple Nikolas Harbar and Stephanie Pelzner were arrested on Valentine's Day, 2012 after Harbar allegedly bound his naked girlfriend and threw her in the back of a car -- in the pursuit of a sexy role-play romp. Cops, after a long search, found that Pelzner wasn't a kidnapping victim, but that both were disorderly conduct suspects. Read more <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/15/bound-naked-role-play_n_1278598.html" target="_hplink">here.</a>
Luerissie Ashley Ross -- who is also a stripper called Pocahontas -- was arrested in February after she allegedly lured a man to his death and shot another in two robberies in Houston. <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/05/15/stripper-pocahontas-shootings-luerissie-ross_n_1517518.html?ref=crime" target="_hplink">Read more.</a>
Kola J. McGrath
Kola J. McGrath was arrested for sneaking into her boyfriend's apartment complex by hiding in a small pink suitcase in Portland, Ore. The police searched the apartment of Curtis T. Lowe after being informed that a man had kidnapped a woman, put her in a suitcase, and taken her into the building. They found McGrath hiding in a closet.
Nicole Dobro, Accused Of Setting Ex-Beau's Bed On Fire
Nicole Dobol, 29, was arrested in December 2012 for allegedly breaking into her ex-boyfriend's apartment and setting fire to a mattress< where he and another woman were sleeping, according to a release from the Monroe County Sheriff's Office.