AR20180001470

1. Applicant’s Name:

a. Application Date: 9 January 2018

b. Date Received: 23 January 2018

c. Counsel: None

2. REQUEST, ISSUES, BOARD TYPE, AND DECISION: The applicant did not properly annotate the
enclosed application requesting a possible discharge upgrade. However, the Army Discharge
Review Board considered the applicant for a possible upgrade as instructed in pertinent part by
Department of Defense Instruction 1332.28 which stipulates that a request for review from an
applicant without an honorable discharge shall be treated as a request for a change to an
honorable discharge unless the applicant requests a specific change to another character of
discharge. The applicant seeks relief contending, in effect, he is trying to change his discharge in
order to allow him to finish school and to receive medical benefits. The medical benefits will help
him with medicine for his PTSD. He states, the Army did not put his disability in his record. He
states, he is no longer around the other person involved.

Per the Board’s Medical Officer, a voting member, based on the information available for review
in the service record, AHLTA, and JLV, the applicant was diagnosed with PTSD. However, due
to the nature of the misconduct, PTSD is not a likely cause of misconduct. Therefore, a nexus
between the PTSD condition and the misconduct is not likely.

In a records review conducted at Arlington, VA on 2 May 2018, and by a 5-0 vote, the Board
denied the request upon finding the separation was both proper and equitable.

(Board member names available upon request)

3. DISCHARGE DETAILS:

a. Reason / Authority / Codes / Characterization: Misconduct (Serious Offense) /
AR 635-200 / Chapter 14-12c / JKQ / RE-3 / General (Under Honorable Conditions)

b. Date of Discharge: 29 December 2016

c. Separation Facts:

(1) Date of Notification of Intent to Separate: Undated

(2) Basis for Separation: The applicant was informed of the following reasons: He
assaulted is wife on or about 11, 28 May and 13 October 2016.

(3) Recommended Characterization: General (Under Honorable Conditions)

(4) Legal Consultation Date: 1 December 2016

(5) Administrative Separation Board: NA

(6) Separation Decision Date / Characterization: 16 December 2016 / General
(Under Honorable Conditions)

4. SERVICE DETAILS:

a. Date / Period of Enlistment: 14 April 2014 / 3 years, 20 weeks

b. Age at Enlistment / Education / GT Score: 19 / HS Graduate / 88

c. Highest Grade Achieved / MOS / Total Service: E-4 / 13D10, Field Artillery
Automation / 2 years, 8 months, 16 days

d. Prior Service / Characterizations: None

e. Overseas Service / Combat Service: Korea / None

f. Awards and Decorations: NDSM, GWOTSM, ASR, OSR

g. Performance Ratings: NA

h. Disciplinary Action(s) / Evidentiary Record:

Law Enforcement Report – 1ST Corrected Final, dated 19 May 2016, reflects an investigation
revealed that on 11 May 2016, the applicant and his spouse were involved in a verbal
altercation, which became physical, when the applicant pushed his spouse with an open hand.
His spouse retaliated by striking the applicant in the face and scratching his left arm. Both were
apprehended and transported to the police station.

Law Enforcement Report – 3RD Corrected Final, dated 8 June 2016, reflects an investigation
revealed that on 28 May 2016, the applicant and his spouse were involved in a verbal
altercation, which became physical, when the applicant hit his spouse in the left upper chest,
pushed her into their garage door, and dragged her across the sidewalk. The applicant used a
closed fist to hit his spouse’s chest, used open hands to push her and drag her along the
sidewalk. The applicant was apprehended and transported to the police station.

Report of Mental Status Evaluation, dated 21 October 2016, reflects the applicant was cleared
for any administrative actions deemed appropriate by the command. The applicant could
understand the difference between right and wrong and could participate in the proceedings.

Law Enforcement Report – 1ST Corrected Final, dated 31 October 2016, reflects an
investigation revealed that on 13 October 2016, the applicant and his spouse were involved in a
verbal altercation, which became physical, when the applicant struck his spouse in the face with
his head. The applicant was apprehended and transported to the police station.

i. Lost Time / Mode of Return: None

j. Diagnosed PTSD / TBI / Behavioral Health: The applicant provided a copy of a
computer screen-shot, from an unspecified medical program, dated 10 February 2018, which in
part, reflects a diagnosis of Post-traumatic stress disorder, unspecified.

5. APPLICANT-PROVIDED EVIDENCE: DD Form 149 and copies of computer-screen shots.

6. POST SERVICE ACCOMPLISHMENTS: None submitted with the application.

7. REGULATORY CITATION(S): 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.

Paragraph 14-12c states a Soldier is subject to action per this section for commission of a
serious military or civilian offense, if the specific circumstances of the offense warrant
separation and a punitive discharge is, or would be, authorized for the same or a closely related
offense under the Manual for Courts-Martial.

National Defense Authorization Act 2017 provided specific guidance to the Military Boards for
Correction of Military/Naval Records and Discharge Review Boards when considering discharge
upgrade requests by Veterans claiming Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) or Traumatic
Brain Injury (TBI) in connection with combat or sexual assault or sexual harassment as a basis
for discharge review. Further, it provided that Boards will include, as a voting board member, a
physician trained in mental health disorders, a clinical psychologist, or a psychiatrist when the
discharge upgrade claim asserts a mental health condition, including PTSD; TBI; as a basis for
the discharge.

In August 2017, the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness
provided further clarifying guidance to the Military Discharge Review Boards and Boards for
Correction of Military/Naval Records when considering requests by Veterans for modification of
their discharge due to mental health conditions, including PTSD; TBI; sexual assault; or sexual
harassment. Liberal consideration will be given to Veterans petitioning for discharge relief when
the application for relief is based in whole or in part on matters relating to mental health
conditions, including PTSD; TBI; sexual assault; or sexual harassment. Special consideration
will be given to Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) determinations that document a mental
health condition, including PTSD; TBI; or sexual assault/harassment potentially contributed to
the circumstances resulting in a less than honorable discharge characterization. Special
consideration will also be given in cases where a civilian provider confers diagnoses of a mental
health condition, including PTSD; TBI; or sexual assault/harassment if the case records contain
narratives supporting symptomatology at the time of service or when any other evidence which
may reasonably indicate that a mental health condition, including PTSD; TBI; or sexual
assault/harassment existed at the time of discharge might have mitigated the misconduct that
caused a discharge of lesser characterization.

Conditions documented in the service record that can reasonably be determined to have existed
at the time of discharge will be considered to have existed at the time of discharge. In cases in
which a mental health condition, including PTSD; TBI; or sexual assault/harassment may be
reasonably determined to have existed at the time of discharge, those conditions will be
considered potential mitigating factors in the misconduct that caused the characterization of
service in question. All Boards will exercise caution in weighing evidence of mitigation in cases
in which serious misconduct precipitated a discharge with a less than Honorable
characterization of service. Potentially mitigating evidence of the existence of undiagnosed
combat related PTSD, PTSD-related conditions due to TBI or sexual assault/harassment as
causative factors in the misconduct resulting in discharge will be carefully weighed against the
severity of the misconduct. PTSD is not a likely cause of premeditated misconduct. Caution
shall be exercised in weighing evidence of mitigation in all cases of misconduct by carefully
considering the likely causal relationship of symptoms to the misconduct.

8. DISCUSSION OF FACT(S): The applicant requests an upgrade of his general (under honorable
conditions) discharge to honorable. The applicant’s record of service, the issues and
documents submitted with his application were carefully reviewed.

The record confirms that the applicant’s discharge was appropriate because the quality of his
service was not consistent with the Army’s standards for acceptable personal conduct and
performance of duty by military personnel. It brought discredit on the Army, and was prejudicial
to good order and discipline.

The applicant provided no independent corroborating evidence demonstrating that either the
command’s action was erroneous or that the applicant’s service mitigated the misconduct or
poor duty performance, such that he should have been retained on Active Duty.

The applicant contends that an upgrade of his discharge would allow him medical and
educational 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.

The applicant contends he has been diagnosed post-service for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
(PTSD). He states, the Army failed to document this disability in his record. However, a careful
review of the entire record reveals that this medical condition did not overcome the reason for
discharge and characterization of service granted. The record shows that on 21 October 2016,
the applicant underwent a mental status evaluation which indicates he was mentally
responsible, with thought content as clear, and was able to recognize right from wrong. It
appears the applicant’s chain of command determined that he knew the difference between
what was right and wrong as indicated by the mental status evaluation.

Further, the 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
applicant’s discharge is commensurate with his overall service record.

The discharge was consistent with the procedural and substantive requirements of the
regulation, was within the discretion of the separation authority, and the applicant was provided
full administrative due process.

9. BOARD DETERMINATION: In a records review conducted at Arlington, VA on 2 May 2018, and
by a 5-0 vote, the Board denied the request upon finding the separation was both proper and
equitable.

10. BOARD ACTION DIRECTED:

a. Issue a New DD-214 / Issue a New Separation Order: No

b. Change Characterization to: No Change

c. Change Reason to: No Change

d. Change Authority to: No Change

e. Change SPD / RE Code to: No Change

Authenticating Official:

Legend:
AWOL – Absent Without Leave GD – General Discharge NCO – Noncommissioned Officer SCM – Summary Court Martial
BCD – Bad Conduct Discharge HS – High School NIF – Not in File SPCM – Special Court Martial
BH – Behavioral Health HD – Honorable Discharge NOS – Not Otherwise Specified SPD – Separation Program Designator
CG – Company Grade Article 15 IADT – Initial Active Duty Training OAD – Ordered to Active Duty TBI – Traumatic Brain Injury
CID – Criminal Investigation Division MP – Military Police OMPF – Official Military Personnel File UNC – Uncharacterized Discharge
ELS – Entry Level Status MST – Military Sexual Trauma PTSD – Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder UOTHC – Under Other Than Honorable Conditions
FG – Field Grade Article 15 NA – Not applicable RE – Reentry VA – Veterans Affairs

ARMY DISCHARGE REVIEW BOARD CASE REPORT AND DIRECTIVE
AR20180001470
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