Thank you for your question today, I look forward to assisting you. I have nearly 20 years of legal experience in various disciplines, including JAG.
You can be charged, yes. That doesn't mean that it would stand up in court if you were to demand trial by court martial.
That being said, there is a difference between your supervisor being aware that you are absent and that absence actually being legally approved.
If you call into your supervisor and tell them that you're going to be absent today, the fact that you just let them know doesn't mean the absence is approved. If you failed to make arrangements to arrive back from leave and they had to come retrieve you, because you can't drive, that would be a properly charged AWOL.
My point here is that AWOL is very fact specific and so your facts here are a bit to vague for me to say that you are absolutely improperly charged.
On these facts, if they offer you any discipline for AWOL, I would refuse it and demand trial by court martial.
You did not knowingly refuse or fail to go to any assigned duty. From these facts, it seems that they wanted to get paperwork done, but simply had completely failed to remember that they had approved leave and you appropriately were relying on that grant of leave.
I see no legitimate basis for an AWOL charge here.
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