AR20140003014

IN THE CASE OF: Mr.

BOARD DATE: 30 January 2015

CASE NUMBER: AR20140003014
___________________________________________________________________________

Board Determination and Directed Action

After carefully examining the applicant’s record of service during the period of enlistment under review and notwithstanding the Discussion and Recommendation which follows, the Board determined the discharge to be 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, he requests an upgrade for employment opportunities, such as with the law enforcement. He was a veteran who had a solid performance record as a military police, until a single incident of misconduct of driving under the influence occurred on a military installation. He was punishedhe paid a fine, served time in custody and probation, and attended an alcohol awareness class. He accepted and submitted to this punishment as consequences of his misconduct. He feels the discharge is a continuing punishment without justification. Further, he also suffers from PTSD. He began seeking treatment while in Afghanistan, but ceased professional treatment upon leaving Afghanistan and began self-medicating with alcohol. He was in a motor vehicle accident in the early months of 2010, and began experiencing increased symptoms of PTSD. In response, he sought professional treatment but continued self-medicating with alcohol. He feels that attempting to deal with his PTSD led to his problem drinking and ultimately a DUI, and his discharge. He is continuing professional treatment for his PTSD and has discontinued drinking.

DISCHARGE UNDER REVIEW INFORMATION:

a. Application Receipt Date: 10 February 2014
b. Discharge Received: General, Under Honorable Conditions
c. Date of Discharge: 9 June 2011
d. Reason/Authority/SPD/RE Code: Misconduct (Serious Offense), AR 635-200
Paragraph 14-12c, JKQ, RE-3
e. Unit of assignment: 272nd MP Co, 519th MP Bn, 1st Maneuver
Enhancement Bde, Fort Polk, LA
f. Current Enlistment Date/Term: 29 June 2007, 5 years
g. Current Enlistment Service: 3 years, 11 months, 11 days
h. Total Service: 3 years, 11 months, 11 days
i. Time Lost: None
j. Previous Discharges: None
k. Highest Grade Achieved: E-4
l. Military Occupational Specialty: 31B10, Military Police
m. GT Score: 90
n. Education: GED
o. Overseas Service: Germany, SWA
p. Combat Service: Afghanistan (080327-090626)
q. Decorations/Awards: AGCM; NDSM; ACM-2CS; GWOTSM; 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 28 June 2007, for a period of 5 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) 31B10, Military Police. He served in Germany and Afghanistan. His record documents no other acts of valor or significant achievement. He completed 3 years, 11 months, and 11 days of active duty service.

SEPARATION FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES:

1. The evidence contained in the applicants service record indicates on 25 March 2011, the unit commander notified the applicant of initiation of separation action under the provisions of Chapter 14, paragraph 14-12c, AR 635-200, by reason misconduct (serious offense), specifically for the following incidents:

a. being apprehended for suspicion of DUI with a .164 BAC (101114);
b. receiving a CG Article 15 (101210) for multiple violations of Article 86, UCMJ;
c. disrespecting an NCO (110216); and
d. committing other offenses, such as reckless driving and failing to obey lawful orders.

2. Based on the above misconduct, the unit commander recommended a general, under honorable conditions discharge and advised the applicant of his rights.

3. On 29 March 2011, the applicant consulted with legal counsel, was advised of the impact of the discharge action and submitted a statement on his own behalf. The unit commander subsequently recommended separation from the Army and waiver of further rehabilitative efforts. The intermediate commander reviewed the proposed action and recommended approval with a general, under honorable conditions discharge.

4. On 27 May 2011, the GCMCA waived further rehabilitation and directed the applicants discharge with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions.

5. The applicant was discharged from the Army on 9 June 2011, with a characterization of service of general, under honorable conditions under the provisions of Chapter 14, paragraph 14-12c, AR 635-200, for misconduct (serious offense), a Separation Program Designator code (SPD) of JKQ, and a RE code of 3.

6. The applicants service record does not contain any evidence of unauthorized absences or time lost.

EVIDENCE OBTAINED FROM THE APPLICANT’S RECORD:

1. State district court document, undated , indicates the applicant received a one-year probation commencing 30 March 2011, with special conditions stipulated as paying fines in full within two months; performing 32 hours of community service; participating in a substance abuse program and driver improvement program; and serving a two-day confinement.

2. Article 15, dated 10 December 2010, failure to report on three occasions (101103 x 2 and 101104). The punishment consisted of a reduction to the grade of E-2, and an oral reprimand (CG).

3. Memorandum, dated 15 December 2010, subject: [the applicant], indicates the applicant successfully completed ASAP on 14 December 2010.

4. Approximately 21 negative counseling statements, dated between 1 February 2010 and 16February 2011, for disrespecting an NCO and failing to obey a direct order; being recommended for separation; failing to be at his appointed place of duty at the prescribed time; being administratively reduced in grade; disobeying a commissioned officer; pass privileges being limited and revoked; being of high risk due to being under the influence of alcohol, driving, having a traffic accident, and PTSD issues; being late due to medication for PTSD; rehabilitative transfer; being drunk on duty; being recommended for a CG Article 15; and reckless driving.

5. Memorandum, dated 11 April 2011, subject: [the applicant], rendered by an MEB examiner, provides a background of the applicants referral to MEB for bulging discs in his thoracic vertebra and his PTSD claim.

6. A General Officer Memorandum of Reprimand, dated 24 November 2010, for driving while intoxicated.

7. An MEB Narrative Summary, dated 26 October 2010, provides a summary of the applicants injury involving multilevel bulging of thoracic intervertebral discs.

8. An MP Report, dated 14 November 2010, indicates the applicant was the subject of an investigation for operating a vehicle while intoxicated and careless driving.

9. Reports of Behavioral Health Evaluation, dated 9 November 2010 and 1 December 2010, indicate diagnosis of alcohol abuse/dependence and depression, and the applicant being psychiatrically cleared for any administrative action deemed appropriate by his command.

10. Memorandum, dated 13 January 2011, subject: [the applicant] Diagnostic Variance Evaluation, rendered by a clinical psychologist indicates that the compensation and pension examination by a VA which resulted a diagnosis that was different from the Armys behavioral health diagnosis, and that it was referred for resolution of the variance. Further, that the applicant was diagnosed with PTSD, mild and anxiety disorder, and that the applicant met retention standards.

11. A Statement of Medical Examination and Duty Status, dated 25 May 2010, indicates that the injury received in a motor vehicle accident was determined to be In Line of Duty.

EVIDENCE SUBMITTED BY THE APPLICANT:

The applicant provided VA decision letter, dated 20 December 2013, and DD Form 214 for service under current review.

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

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

DISCUSSION AND RECOMMENDATION:

1. The applicants request for an upgrade of the characterization of his discharge was carefully considered.

2. After examining the applicants record of service, the available information in his military records, the documents and issues submitted with the application, there are several mitigating factors to merit an upgrade of the applicant’s discharge to honorable for the following reasons:

a. Length and quality of service: The applicant served over 3 years and 11 months of his 5-year enlistment, thus the preponderance of his service was honorable.

b. The record confirms the applicant served a tour in combat.

c. The applicants medical evidence reflects that the applicant displayed symptoms of PTSD and was diagnosed with PTSD while on active duty, which may have contributed to the misconduct that led to his discharge.

3. This recommendation is made after full consideration of all of the applicants faithful and honorable service, as well as the record of misconduct. The medical evidence in this case supports a conclusion that the applicants characterization of service may now be too harsh and as a result inequitable.

4. In view of the foregoing, it appears the characterization of the discharge is now inequitable and it is recommended the Board grant relief in the form of an upgrade of the characterization of service to honorable. However, the reason for the discharge was fully supported by the record and therefore, remains both proper and equitable.

BOARD DETERMINATION AND DIRECTED ACTION

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

SUMMARY OF ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD HEARING:

Type of Hearing: Records Review Date: 30 January 2015 Location: Washington, DC

Did the Applicant Testify, NA

Counsel/Representative: Yes [ redacted ]

Witnesses/Observers: NA

Board Vote:
Character Change: 1 No Change: 4
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) AR20140003014

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ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD (ADRB)

CASE REPORT AND DIRECTIVE

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