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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 110540
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
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I was presented with a summarized article 15 summary today

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Hello, I was presented with a summarized article 15 summary today based off article 86 Absent without Leave. my 1SG and company commander are pushing ucmj action because i was sleeping, on my day off(i am a shift worker so my off day was during the week) and missed their calls informing me that i had a urinalysis. I called them back at 12:15pm, as soon as i woke up and they said i was AWOL. I have been taking ambien for over a year now because my chain of command failed to remove me from the barracks after a stalking issue last year and i cannot sleep without it. While they did come to my barracks room, they know that I stay at my boyfriends house because I am scared to sleep in the barracks. They have his address, but did not come to his house. Thus, did not try everything to find me. During the first reading (today), I asked 3 times for copies of my article 15 packet and they refused to give me anything, including the article summary. I know for a fact that they have no right to punish me for something that i did not knowingly do. I have until 6 pm tomorrow to decide if i should accept, or court martial.. Accepting this, knowing that it is opposite of Army reg, and despite the evidence/documentation would be absolutely foolish. My 1SG walks all over soldiers, particularly female, and I am done putting up with their endless power trips. They said that I have no right to talk to TDS. What should I do from here? accept and appeal, or court martial?
JA: Has anything been officially filed?
Customer: yes. today was the first reading, tomorrow is the second.
JA: Have you talked to anyone in the chain of command about this?
Customer: My squad leader is the one sending me down the river. I want to talk to Sergeant Major in the morning, and possibly IG for the barracks issue
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I was sleeping on a non-duty day, 2 days after an ER visit, and missed their calls. I cannot be AWOL if i did not know that I was supposed to report to a urinalysis.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking for educational purposes only.
If you did not do what you have been accused of and the facts are as they say, I would strongly urge you to exercise your right to be represented by a JAG officer and I would suggest you fight the charges based on you taking legally prescribed medications and the effect of those medications can indeed produce the effects that you describe above and would be grounds for you to not have answered the phone.
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Customer: replied 8 days ago.
I was told that I have no right to the Trial Defense (TDS) since it is a summarized article 15?

Thank you for your reply.

While you have no absolute right to an attorney on a summarized article, you still have the ability to seek counsel to discuss the claims. At this point though, I would consider submitting your written proof, including a report from your doctor regarding use of the Ambien and effects to your command. I would also consider filing your EEO complaint again regarding the sexual harassment and claim this new issue is retaliation for your prior complaints about stalking.

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