AR20140000518

IN THE CASE OF: Mr.

BOARD DATE: 5 November 2014

CASE NUMBER: AR20140000518
___________________________________________________________________________

Board Determination and Directed Action

After carefully examining the applicant’s available record of service during the period of enlistment under review and considering the Discussion and Recommendation which follows, the Board determined the discharge to be both proper and equitable and voted to deny relief.

Presiding Officer

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 an upgrade of his uncharacterized discharge to honorable and a change to the narrative reason for separation.

2. The applicant states, in effect, while enlisted, he dislocated his right knee cap, tore his ACL and tore his Meniscus, according to the Army physicians. A career ending injury for the best of athletes let alone an infantryman. All this all occurred while in basic and advanced individual training. He took the advice of his senior enlisted staff and did not request a medical review for his discharge and was urged to take the ELS (entry level separation). It was explained that he would have to remain on base in a rehab facility until the injury was healed if he chose to take a medical discharge, so he opted for the ELS since the recovery time for this injury was over a year. He feels as though he was mislead and provided incorrect info to have him moved out of the Army ASAP.

DISCHARGE UNDER REVIEW INFORMATION:

a. Application Receipt Date: 24 December 2013
b. Discharge received: Uncharacterized
c. Date of Discharge: 16 October 2003
d. Reason/Authority/SPD/RE: Entry Level Performance and Conduct, Chapter 11, AR 635-200, JGA, RE-3
e. Unit of assignment: 1st Battalion, 50th Infantry Brigade, Delta Company,
2nd Platoon, Fort Benning, G
f. Current Enlistment Date/Term: 13 May 2003/Term-NIF
g. Current Enlistment Service: 5 months, 4 days
h. Total Service: 5 months, 4 days
i. Time Lost: None
j. Previous Discharges: None
k. Highest Grade Achieved: E-3
l. Military Occupational Specialty: None
m. GT Score: 117
n. Education: HS Graduate
o. Overseas Service: None
p. Combat Service: None
q. Decorations/Awards: None
r. Administrative Separation Board: NA
s. Performance Ratings: NIF
t. Counseling Statements: NIF
u. Prior Board Review: No

SUMMARY OF SERVICE:

The applicant enlisted in the Regular Army on 13 May 2003 and was subsequently separated on 16 October 2003, by reason of entry level performance and conduct with an uncharacterized separation of service. He was 22 years old at the time and a high school graduate. He was attending basic training at Fort Benning, GA, when his separation proceedings were initiated.

SEPARATION FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES

1. The applicants record is void of the specific facts and circumstances (i.e., as requested on his online application for the period of service ending 16 October 2003) concerning the events which led to the discharge from the Army. However, the record contains a properly constituted DD Form 214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty), which was not authenticated by the applicants signature.

2. The DD Form 214 indicates on 16 October 2003, the applicant was discharged under the provisions of Chapter 11, AR 635-200, with the reason specified as entry level performance and conduct and the characterization of service described as uncharacterized. The DD Form 214 shows a Separation Program Designator (SPD) code of JGA and a reentry (RE) code of 3.

3. The applicant was placed on excess leave for 10 days from (030307-030512).

4. On 16 October 2003, DAHQ, US Infantry Center, Fort Benning, GA, issued Orders Number 289-2239, discharged the applicant from the Regular Army with an effective date of: 16 October 2003.

5. The applicants available record does not show any record of actions under the UCMJ or unauthorized absences or time lost.

6. The applicant was separated from the Regular Army on 16 October 2003, with an uncharacterized discharge.

EVIDENCE OBTAINED FROM THE APPLICANT’S RECORD

DD Form 214 for the period of service ending 16 October 2003 and separation Orders 289-2239 dated 16 October 2003.

EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE APPLICANT

The applicant provided a copy of his medical report from the Martin Army Community Hospital dated 7 August 2003 and an online application dated 20 December 2013.

POST-SERVICE ACTIVITY:

The applicant did not provide any with the application.

REGULATORY AUTHORITY

1. Army Regulation 635-200 sets forth the basic authority for the separation of enlisted personnel. Paragraph 3-9 contains guidance on entry level separations. It states a separation will be described as entry-level with service uncharacterized if, at the time separation action is initiated, the Soldier has less than 180days of continuous active duty service.

2. Chapter11 of Army Regulation 635-200 provides for the separation of personnel due to unsatisfactory performance, conduct, or both, while in an entry level status (ELS). An uncharacterized service description is normally granted to Soldiers separating under this chapter.

3. A general discharge (GD) under honorable conditions discharge is not authorized under ELS conditions and an honorable discharge (HD) is rarely ever granted. An HD may be given only in cases which are clearly warranted by unusual circumstances involving outstanding personal conduct and/or performance of duty.

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 “JGA” as the appropriate code to assign enlisted Soldiers who are discharged under the provisions of Army Regulation 635-200, Chapter 11, for entry level performance and conduct.

5. The SPD Code/RE Code Cross Reference Table shows that a Soldier assigned an SPD Code of “JGA” will be assigned an RE Code of 3.

DISCUSSION AND RECOMMENDATION:

1. The applicants request for an upgrade of the characterization of his discharge and a change to the narrative reason was carefully considered. However, after examining the applicants available military records for the period of service under review (16 October 2003) and the issue submitted with the application, there are insufficient mitigating factors to merit an upgrade of the applicant’s discharge or a change to the narrative reason for the separation.

2. The applicants record is void of the specific facts and circumstances for the period of service under review (i.e., as requested on his online application; the period of service ending 16 October 2003) concerning the events which led to his discharge from the Army. However, the record contains a properly constituted DD Form 214 (Certificate of Release or Discharge from Active Duty), which was authenticated by the applicant’s signature. This document identifies the reason and characterization of the discharge and government regularity is presumed in the discharge process.
3. The DD Form 214 indicates the applicant was discharged under the provisions of Chapter 11, AR 635-200, by reason of entry level performance and conduct, with a characterization of service described as uncharacterized. Barring evidence to the contrary, it appears that all requirements of law and regulation were met and the rights of the applicant were fully protected throughout the separation process.

4. The applicant was discharged by reason of entry-level status, with the description of service as uncharacterized. Army Regulation 635-200 provides in pertinent part, that a Soldier is in entry-level status for the first 180 days of continuous active duty. The purpose of the entry-level status is to provide the Soldier a probationary period. Soldiers who are found to lack the necessary motivation, adaptability, self-discipline, ability, or attitude to become productive Soldiers may be expeditiously separated while in entry-level status. The Regulation also provides, except in cases of serious misconduct, that a Soldiers service will be uncharacterized when the separation is initiated while the Soldier is in entry level status.

5. The applicant contends that he would like an upgrade of his discharge to honorable and he feels as though he was mislead and provided incorrect info to have him moved out of the Army ASAP. The uncharacterized description of service accurately reflects the applicants overall record of service. An uncharacterized discharge is neither positive nor negative and it is not meant to be a negative reflection of a Soldiers military service. It merely means the Soldier has not been in the Army long enough for the character of service to be rated as honorable or otherwise. An honorable discharge may be granted only in cases which are clearly warranted by unusual circumstances involving outstanding personal conduct or performance of duty. The applicants service record indicates no such unusual circumstances were present and did not warrant an honorable characterization.

6. The applicant requests a change to the narrative reason for his separation from the service. 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 “JGA” as the appropriate code to assign enlisted Soldiers who are discharged under the provisions of Army Regulation 635-200, Chapter 11, for entry level performance and conduct. The regulation further stipulates that no deviation is authorized.

7. Further, the SPD Code/RE Code Cross Reference Table shows that a Soldier assigned an SPD Code of “JGA” will be assigned an RE Code of 3.

8. The availabel record does not contain any indication or evidence of arbitrary or capricious actions by the command and all requirements of law and regulation were met and the rights of the applicant were fully protected throughout the separation process. The character of the applicants discharge is commensurate with his overall service record.

9. If the applicant desires a personal appearance hearing, it will be his responsibility to meet the burden of proof and provide the appropriate documents (i.e., the discharge packet for the period of service dated 16 October 2003, which he annotated on his online application) or other evidence sufficient to explain the facts, circumstances, and reasons underlying the separation action, for the Boards consideration because they are not available in the official record.

10. Therefore, based on the available evidence, the reason for discharge and the characterization of service appear to be proper and equitable, thus recommend the Board deny relief.

SUMMARY OF ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD HEARING:

Type of Hearing: Records Review Date: 5 November 2014 Location: Washington, DC

Did the Applicant Testify, NA

Counsel: None

Witnesses/Observers: NA

Board Vote:
Character Change: 0 No Change: 5
Reason Change: 0 No Change: 5
(Board member names available upon request)

Board Action Directed:
Issue a new DD Form 214: No
Change Characterization to: No Change
Change Reason to: No Change
Change Authority for Separation: NA
Change RE Code to: NA
Grade Restoration to: NA
Other: NA

Legend:
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 UOTH – Under Other Than Honorable
ADRB Case Report and Directive (cont) AR 20140000518

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ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD (ADRB)

CASE REPORT AND DIRECTIVE

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