Marcus Aurelius: Is retirement an option for Fort Bragg Gen. Jeffrey Sinclair, who is accused of forcible sodomy?

Corruption, Military
Marcus Aurelius

We have yet to hear from GEN DEMPSEY, current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, as to what he thinks should happen to BG SINCLAIR. Chairman was on record yesterday as saying that MG WARD, former CDRUSAFRICOM and charged by DoDIG with a whole litany of offenses, should retire as a four-star general.

Fayetteville (NC) Observer, October 7, 2012, Pg. 1

Is retirement an option for Fort Bragg Gen. Jeffrey Sinclair, who is accused of forcible sodomy?

Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair is being investigated for sexual misconduct and other charges.

By Henry Cuningham and Drew Brooks, Staff Writers

Under military law, Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair may be able to ask the secretary of the Army for permission to retire rather than face possible court-martial for forcible sodomy.

Fort Bragg officials declined to discuss whether retirement is a possibility for Sinclair or if he has made such a request.

“It is premature to discuss this,” Ben Abel, a Fort Bragg spokesman, said.

A military justice fact sheet furnished by Fort Bragg indicates that the Army’s top civilian leader, Army Secretary John McHugh, has “approval authority” for a resignation request from an officer.

If petitioned by Sinclair, McHugh would have to take into account comments by his boss, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta.

“It’s an outrage that we aren’t prosecuting our people involved here,” Panetta said in a Sept. 27 interview on sexual assaults in the military. NBC News reported that only 240 cases were prosecuted out of more than 3,000 reported last year.

Victor Hansen, a retired Army lieutenant colonel who served as a military lawyer, doesn’t believe that Sinclair will get the option of retirement.

Hansen, who serves as vice president of the National Institute of Military Justice, said that he represented general officers during his time in the military, but said none of those cases ever made it to trial. The Uniform Code of Military Justice — basically the law covering people in uniform — has a provision that can allow retirement in lieu of a court-martial.

But Hansen said he doesn’t think Sinclair will be allowed to escape the public scrutiny of a trial.

“I wouldn’t expect it,” Hansen said. “They would not let him resolve that quietly.”

In addition to the forcible sodomy charge, Sinclair is accused of wrongful sexual conduct, attempted violation of an order, wrongfully engaging in inappropriate relationships, misusing a government travel charge card, violating general orders by possessing alcohol and pornography while deployed, mistreating subordinates, filing fraudulent claims, engaging in conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman, and engaging in conduct prejudicial to good order and discipline, officials have said.

Read full article.

Military Definition of Sodomy:  The sodomy statute, Article 125, stipulates, “Any person who is subject to this charter who engages in unnatural carnal copulation with another person of the same or opposite sex or with an animal is guilty of sodomy. Penetration, however slight, is sufficient to complete the offense.” It also states, “Any person found guilty of sodomy shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.”  Source