IN THE CASE OF: Mr.
BOARD DATE: 19 November 2014
CASE NUMBER: AR20140000447
Board Determination and Directed Action
After carefully examining the applicants record of service during the period of enlistment under review and the Discussion and Recommendation that follows, the Board noted that the government introduced a document into the discharge process revealing the applicant had self-referred to the Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP) for substance abuse. This is limited use information as defined in AR 600-85. Use of this information mandates award of an honorable discharge. Accordingly, the Board voted to change the characterization of service to honorable. The Board found the reason for discharge was fully supported by the record and voted not to change it.
I certify that herein is recorded the true and complete record of the proceedings of the Department of the Army Discharge Review Board in this case.
THE APPLICANTS REQUEST AND STATEMENT:
1. The applicant requests to upgrade the characterization of his service from general, under honorable conditions to fully honorable.
2. The applicant states, in pertinent part and in effect, he was suffering from a severe drug and alcohol issues due to depression caused by an automobile accident. He was assigned to a WTU. He believes he was also suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). He was treated for MTBI. He was never tested or checked for the underlying issue that led to his drinking and depression. An upgrade would allow him to finally get the help and treatment he needs.
DISCHARGE UNDER REVIEW INFORMATION:
a. Application Receipt Date: 23 December 2013
b. Discharge Received: General, Under Honorable Conditions
c. Date of Discharge: 24 December 2008
d. Reason/Authority/SPD/RE Code: Alcohol Rehabilitation Failure, AR 635-200, Chapter 9,
e. Unit of assignment: WTU, USA MEDDAC, Fort Jackson, SC
f. Current Enlistment Date/Term: 23 May 2006, 6 years, 22 weeks
g. Current Enlistment Service: 2 year, 7 months, 2 days
h. Total Service: 2 year, 7 months, 2 days
i. Time Lost: None
j. Previous Discharges: None
k. Highest Grade Achieved: E-4
l. Military Occupational Specialty: 92F10, Petroleum Supply Specialist
m. GT Score: 108
n. Education: GED
o. Overseas Service: Germany
p. Combat Service: None
q. Decorations/Awards: NDSM; GWOTSM; ASR
r. Administrative Separation Board: No
s. Performance Ratings: None
t. Counseling Statements: Yes
u. Prior Board Review: No
SUMMARY OF SERVICE:
The record shows the applicant enlisted in the Regular Army on 23 May 2006, for a period of 6 years and 22 weeks. He was 22 years old at the time of entry and had a high school equivalency (GED). He was trained in and awarded military occupational specialty (MOS) 92F10, Petroleum Supply Specialist. His record documents no acts of valor or significant achievement. He served in Germany. He completed 2 years, 7 months, and 2 days of active duty service.
SEPARATION FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES:
1. The evidence of record indicates that the applicant with a previous history of being enrolled in the Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP), on 12 June 2008, he was enrolled in Track II program and was recommended to attend the Army Drug and Alcohol Prevention Training (ADAPT). He attended ADAPT on 16 and 17 June 2008; however on 16 June 2008, the Soldier was found on the floor in his room with two cans of dust off (inhalants). He admitted to inhalant use. On 30 June 2008, he was found with another episode of inhalant use in his roomhe had slurred speech and spaced out for a few minutes, and again, admitted to inhalant use. He began a two-week intensive outpatient program and agreed to take antabuse. At a medical evaluation team meeting, he was recommended to attend ASAP at Fort Gordon, and he was also diagnosed as inhalant dependence. Subsequently, he completed an intensive outpatient treatment program including aftercare at a VA Medical Center on 29 September 2008. On 30 September 2008, two cans of dust off were found in his room and when confronted, he denied he used inhalant and after more questioning, he admitted to inhalant use a month earlier. He was admitted for inpatient treatment in a Substance Abuse Rehabilitation Program (SARP) and successfully completed the program on 21 November 2008. On 2 December 2008, he relapsed by using inhalant.
2. On 2 and 8 December 2008, the unit commander in consultation with the Clinical Director/Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP), declared the applicant a rehabilitation failure.
3. On 13 December 2008, the unit commander notified the applicant of initiation of separation action under the provisions of Chapter 9, AR 635-200, by reason of alcohol or drug rehabilitation failure because of having six inhalant use relapses since his enrollment in ASAP, and lacking the personal motivation and potential for continued military service.
4. The unit commander advised the applicant of his rights and recommended a discharge from the Army with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions and waiver of any rehabilitation measures.
5. On 13 December 2009, the applicant waived legal counsel, was advised of the impact of the discharge action, and did not submit a statement on his own behalf. The unit commander subsequently recommended separation from the Army. The intermediate commander reviewed the proposed action and recommended approval with a general, under honorable conditions discharge.
6. On 19 December 2008, although the separation authoritys decision memorandum is in the context of using the recommend language, it was actually the decision memorandum; wherein, the separation authority waived further rehabilitation and directed the applicants discharge with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions.
7. Subsequently, the applicant was separated on 24 December 2008, under Army Regulation 635-200, Chapter 9, for alcohol rehabilitation failure, with a general, under honorable conditions discharge, an SPD code of JPD, and a reentry code of 4.
8. The applicants record does not contain any evidence of unauthorized absences or time lost.
EVIDENCE OBTAINED FROM THE APPLICANT’S RECORD:
1. Memorandum for the commander, dated 8 December 2008, subject: Chapter 9 Letter for the applicant, rendered by the clinical director of ASAP is self-explanatory.
2. Article 15, dated 6 October 2008, for wrongfully using cocaine, ecstasy, and methamphetamine (080405) and violating a general regulation (080521). The punishment consisted of reduction to the grade of E-2, forfeiture of $754 per month for two months (suspended), and 45 days of extra duty and restriction, (FG)
3. Three negative counseling statements, dated between 9 October 2008 and 2 December 2008, for having aerosol inhalants in his room; failing to be at his appointed place of duty at the prescribed time; and disobeying an NCO.
EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE APPLICANT:
The applicant provided none.
The applicant provided none.
1. Army Regulation 635-200 sets forth the basic authority for the separation of enlisted personnel. Chapter 9 outlines the procedures for discharging individuals because of alcohol or other drug abuse.
2. A member who has been referred to the Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP) for alcohol or drug abuse may be separated because of inability or refusal to participate in, cooperate in, or successfully complete such a program if there is a lack of potential for continued Army service and rehabilitation efforts are no longer practical.
3. Army policy states that an honorable or general, under honorable conditions discharge is authorized depending on the applicants overall record of service. However, an honorable discharge is required if limited use information is used in the discharge process.
4. Army Regulation 635-5-1 (Separation Program Designator (SPD) Codes) provides the specific authorities (regulatory or directive), reasons for separating Soldiers from active duty, and the SPD codes to be entered on the DD Form 214. It identifies the SPD code of “JPD” as the appropriate code to assign enlisted Soldiers who are discharged under the provisions of Army Regulation 635-200, Chapter 9, for alcohol rehabilitation failure.
5. The SPD Code/RE Code Cross Reference Table shows that a Soldier assigned an SPD Code of “JPD” will be assigned an RE Code of 4.
DISCUSSION AND RECOMMENDATION:
1. After a careful review of all the applicants military records the issue submitted with the application, the characterization of service appears to be improper.
2. The record confirms the government introduced a document into the discharge process revealing the applicant had self-referred to the Army Substance Abuse Program (ASAP) for substance abuse and is a violation of the limited use policy. The memo was clearly introduced by the command as it is listed as an enclosure to the company commander’s notification memo to the Soldier. This is limited use information as defined in AR 600-85 and is protected evidence and use of this information mandates the award of an honorable characterization of service.
3. The records show the proper discharge and separation procedures were not followed in this case.
4. The applicant’s desires to use VA health benefits. However, eligibility for veteran’s benefits to include educational benefits under the Post-9/11 or Montgomery GI Bill does not fall within the purview of the Army Discharge Review Board. Accordingly, the applicant should contact a local office of the Department of Veterans Affairs for further assistance. Further, the Board does not grant relief solely for the purpose of attaining veterans benefits.
5. The applicant contends his was suffering from severe drug and alcohol issues due to depression, PTSD, and MTBI, and that he were never tested or checked for the underlying issues that led to his drinking and depression. However, the evidence of record shows the command attempted to assist the applicant in performing and conducting himself to Army standards by providing counseling, the imposition of a non-judicial punishment, and referrals to and treatments by several substance abuse rehabilitation programs. The applicant failed to respond appropriately to these efforts. Furthermore, the service record contains no evidence of PTSD or MTBI diagnosis and the applicant did not submit any evidence to support the contention that the discharge was the result of those medical conditions. The applicant bears the burden of presenting substantial and credible evidence to support his issues. The applicants statements alone are not sufficiently compelling toward a consideration for granting an upgrade.
6. Therefore, the characterization of service being improper, recommend the Board grant full relief by upgrading the applicants characterization of service to honorable. However, the reason for the discharge was fully supported by the record and remains both proper and equitable.
SUMMARY OF ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD HEARING:
Type of Hearing: Records Review Date: 19 November 2014 Location: Washington, DC
Did the Applicant Testify: NA
Character Change: 5 No Change: 0
Reason Change: 0 No Change: 5
(Board member names available upon request)
Board Action Directed:
Issue a new DD Form 214: Yes
Change Characterization to: Honorable
Change Reason to: No Change
Change Authority for Separation: NA
Change RE Code to: NA
Grade Restoration to: NA
AMHRR – Army Military Human Resource Record FG – Field Grade IADT Initial Active Duty Training RE – Reentry
AWOL – Absent Without Leave GD – General Discharge NA – Not applicable SCM- Summary Court Martial
BCD – Bad Conduct Discharge HS – High School NIF – Not in File SPCM – Special Court Martial
CG – Company Grade Article 15 HD – Honorable Discharge OAD – Ordered to Active Duty UNC – Uncharacterized Discharge
CID – Criminal investigation Department MP Military Police OMPF – Official Military Personnel File UOTHC – Under Other Than Honorable Conditions
ADRB Case Report and Directive (cont) AR20140000447
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ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD (ADRB)
CASE REPORT AND DIRECTIVE