Thanks for the chance to help. I recently retired and am considering both VFW and AL but not sure which I will join
You most certainly do not have to prove your innocent. Our Constitution as well as your state make that clear
The crime of forgery generally refers to the making of a fake document, the changing of an existing document, or the making of a signature without authorization. Documents that can be the object of forgery include contracts, identification cards, and legal certificates.
In VA, for public record:
§ 18.2-168. Forging public
If any person forge a public
record, or certificate, return, or attestation, of any public
officer or public
employee, in relation to any matter wherein such certificate, return, or attestation may be received as legal proof, or utter, or attempt to employ as true, such forged record, certificate, return, or attestation, knowing the same to be forged, he shall be guilty of a Class 4 felony.
INTENT TO DEFRAUD IS AN ELEMENT of the offense of forgery of public documents. Campbell v. Commonwealth, 14 Va. App. 988, 421 S.E.2d 652 (1992),
aff'd, 246 Va. 1974, 431 S.E.2d 648 (1993).
SO, the commonwealth is required to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt. If you made a mistake between VFW and AL (and i confuse them myself on occasion) that is NOT forgery under the law
That said, this is a criminal
trial and you will need a good Criminal Law attorney. I know of at least one in VA but I know there are many. I do not recommend you represent yourself in any criminal matter
Please let me know if you have questions else please hit the green button, its the only way i get paid