AR20140001179

IN THE CASE OF: Mr.

BOARD DATE: 12 December 2014

CASE NUMBER: AR20140001179
___________________________________________________________________________

Board Determination and Directed Action

After carefully examining the applicant’s record of service during the period of enlistment under review and considering the Discussion and Recommendation which follows, the Board determined the discharge was 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 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, his AWOL statuses were due to the effects of his medication he took for depression. He informed his commanding officer that he needed help several times, but nothing was ever done. He sought assistance from an off-post psychiatrist. He is unable to obtain the medical records because they can only release it to the medical board or of higher authority upon request. He followed his lieutenants orders to return home to finish up some paper and next thing he knew he was AWOL again. The lieutenant whom he trusted and had deployed with him denied giving him orders to go home. He strongly feels his discharge was unjust. He rarely had any problems with misconduct until near the end and believes the medication caused the incidents that led to his discharge.

DISCHARGE UNDER REVIEW INFORMATION:

a. Application Receipt Date: 14 January 2014
b. Discharge Received: General, Under Honorable Conditions
c. Date of Discharge: 19 February 2013
d. Reason/Authority/SPD/RE Code: Misconduct (AWOL), AR 635-200, Paragraph 14-
12c(1), JKD, RE-3
e. Unit of assignment: 584th Engineer Rear, FC, 20th Engineer Battalion
Rear, Fort Hood, TX
f. Current Enlistment Date/Term: 26 February 2010, 6 years
g. Current Enlistment Service: 2 years, 9 months, 22 days
h. Total Service: 4 years, 3 months, 1 day
i. Time Lost: 63 days
j. Previous Discharges: RA (080917-100225) / HD
k. Highest Grade Achieved: E-4
l. Military Occupational Specialty: 12B10, Combat Engineer
m. GT Score: NIF
n. Education: GED
o. Overseas Service: SWA
p. Combat Service: Afghanistan (100119-110113)
q. Decorations/Awards: ARCOM; AGCM; NDSM; ACM-CS; ASR; OSR;
NATO MDL; CAB
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 17 September 2008, and reenlisted on 16 February 2010, for a period of 6 years. He was 18 years old at the time of entry and had a high school equivalency (GED). He was trained in and awarded military occupational specialty (MOS) 12B10, Combat Engineer. He served in Afghanistan. He earned an ARCOM. He completed 4 years, 3 months, and 1 day of active duty service.

SEPARATION FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES:

1. The applicants service record is void of the specific facts and circumstances 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. The record also contains the separation authoritys decision memorandum.

2. In an undated memorandum, the separation authority directed the applicants discharge with a general, under honorable conditions.

3. The DD Form 214 indicates that on 19 February 2013, the applicant was discharged under the provisions of Chapter 14, AR 635-200, paragraph 14-12c(1), for misconduct (AWOL), with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions. The DD Form 214 also shows a Separation Program Designator (SPD) code of JKD, and a reentry (RE) code of 3.

4. The applicants available record does not show any recorded actions under the UCMJ; however, it shows he was absent without leave (AWOL) on two separate occasions during the period 4 September 2012 through 16 September 2012, and 19 September 2012 through 7 November 2012, for a total of 63 days of time lost. He was separated as a PVT/E-1 and the action that caused his reduction is not contained in the service record.

5. On 5 February 2013, HQDA, III Corps and Fort Hood, Fort Hood, TX, Orders Number 036-0131, discharged the applicant from the Army, effective 19 February 2013.

EVIDENCE OBTAINED FROM THE APPLICANT’S RECORD:

1. DFR packet one consists of the following:

a. Report of Return of Absentee, dated 8 November 2012, indicates the applicant surrendered to military control at Fort Bragg, NC, on 8 November 2011.
b. DD Form 553, Deserter/Absentee Wanted by the Armed Forces, dated 24 September 2012, indicates the applicant was reported AWOL on 19 September 2012.

2. DFR packet two, in pertinent part, consists of the following:

a. Charge Sheet, indicates two charges, desertion and AWOL, were preferred on 21 September 2012.
b. Notification of AWOL and desertion to the applicants spouse, dated 21 September 2012, is self-explanatory.
c. Counseling statement, dated 17 September 2012, indicates the applicant acknowledged being counseled for having conditions placed on his liberties due to being AWOL; pending a FG Article 15; being considered a flight risk; and being confined to the barracks for 14 days.

2. Five DA Forms 4187, Personnel Actions, indicates the applicants duty statuses as follows:

a. dated 14 November 2012, status changed from DFR to Return to Military Control, effective 8 November 2012;
b. dated 20 September 2012, status changed from AWOL to DFR, effective 20 September 2012;
c. dated 19 September 2012, status changed from PDY to AWOL, effective 19 September 2012;
d. dated 17 September 2012, status changed from AWOL to PDY, effective 17 September 2012; and
e. dated 6 September 2012, status changed from PDY to AWOL, effective 4 September 2012.

3. DA Form 1059, Service School Academic Report, dated 11 March 2011, indicates the applicant achieved the course standards of the WLC.

EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE APPLICANT:

The applicant provided none.

POST-SERVICE ACTIVITY:

The applicant provided none.

REGULATORY AUTHORITY:

1. Army Regulation 635-200 sets forth the basic authority for the separation of enlisted personnel. Chapter 14 establishes policy and prescribes procedures for separating members for misconduct. Specific categories include minor disciplinary infractions, a pattern of misconduct, and commission of a serious offense, to include abuse of illegal drugs, convictions by civil authorities and desertion or being absent without leave. Action will be taken to separate a member for misconduct when it is clearly established that rehabilitation is impractical or unlikely to succeed. Army policy states that an under other than honorable conditions discharge is normally considered appropriate; however, a general, under honorable conditions or an honorable discharge may be granted.

2. Army Regulation 635-200, paragraph 3-7a, provides that an honorable discharge is a separation with honor and entitles the recipient to benefits provided by law. The honorable characterization is appropriate when the quality of the members service generally has met the standards of acceptable conduct and performance of duty for Army personnel, or is otherwise so meritorious that any other characterization would be clearly inappropriate. Whenever there is doubt, it is to be resolved in favor of the individual.

3. Army Regulation 635-200, paragraph 3-7b, provides that a general discharge is a separation from the Army under honorable conditions. When authorized, it is issued to a Soldier whose military record is satisfactory but not sufficiently meritorious to warrant an honorable discharge. A characterization of under honorable conditions may be issued only when the reason for the Soldiers separation specifically allows such characterization.

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 “JKD” as the appropriate code to assign enlisted Soldiers who are discharged under the provisions of Army Regulation 635-200, Chapter 14, paragraph 14-12c(1), misconduct (AWOL).

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

DISCUSSION AND RECOMMENDATION:

1. The applicants request for an upgrade of the characterization of his discharge was carefully considered. However, after examining the applicants record of service, his military records, and the issues submitted with the application, there are insufficient mitigating factors to merit an upgrade of the applicant’s discharge.

2. The applicants record is void of the specific facts and circumstances 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 not 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 also indicates the applicant was discharged under the provisions of Chapter 14, AR 635-200, paragraph 14-12c(1), by reason of misconduct (AWOL), with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions. Barring evidence to the contrary, the presumption of government regularity prevails as it appears that all the requirements of law and regulation were met and the rights of the applicant were fully protected throughout the separation process.

4. The applicant’s contentions that his discharge was unjust because it was the result of his medical condition and the effects of medication, and that he had to seek medical assistance off-post because he received no assistance from his commander, were carefully considered. However, there is insufficient evidence available in the official record to make a determination upon the applicant’s quality of service. Moreover, there is a presumption of regularity in the conduct of governmental affairs which is applied in all Army discharge reviews unless there is substantial credible evidence to rebut the presumption. There is no evidence in the record, nor has the applicant produced any evidence, to support a change to the characterization of service granted. The applicants statements alone do not overcome the presumption of government regularity and the application contains no documentation or further evidence in support of this request for an upgrade of the discharge.

5. Regarding the applicants contention that his medical condition with medication issues contributed to his discharge from the Army was considered, however there is no record to support the applicants contentions, and no evidence to support it has been submitted to corroborate the discharge was the result of any medical condition.

6. If the applicant desires a personal appearance hearing, it would be his responsibility to meet the burden of proof and provide the appropriate documents (i.e., the discharge packet and medical records) 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.

7. Therefore, based on the available evidence and the government presumption of regularity, it appears the reason for discharge and the characterization of service are both proper and equitable, thus recommend the Board deny relief.

SUMMARY OF ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD HEARING:

Type of Hearing: Records Review Date: 12 December 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 UOTHC – Under Other Than Honorable Conditions
ADRB Case Report and Directive (cont) AR20140001179

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ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD (ADRB)

CASE REPORT AND DIRECTIVE

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