Army adjusts to operating in phony soldier environment

| May 28, 2010

1stCavRVN11B sent us this article about Jesse Bernard Johnston, the phony soldier we mentioned last week who used forged documents to join the Army as a sergeant. The Army has decided that they’ll use their own records rather than accept a DD214 discharge an enlistee hands them.

The Army is instituting a new procedure for checking the backgrounds of enlistees who claim to have a military record after a report that a reservist apparently faked a background as a Marine to enter the service.

Recruiters can no longer simply accept discharge papers as proof of service, Douglas Smith, public information officer for the Army recruiting command, told The Associated Press on Thursday. They now must also seek to verify the documents through a military database, he said.

We’ve found falsified DD214s – most notably, Geoff Millard, the president of the board of IVAW who added three Meritorious Medals along with a load of other crap to his DD214. Of course, Jesse MacBeth and his forgery is the most famous (the fake, the real one).

I’m surprised that the Army isn’t doing this already – but after watching the admin people ignore the usefullness of a computer network at Walter Reed, maybe I’m not all that surprised.

Category: Military issues, Phony soldiers

Comments (5)

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  1. B Woodman says:

    That was my question when I first heard this:
    The recruiters aren’t already verifying ALL information?

  2. Anonymous says:

    What, you mean they didn’t check? (I kinda thought they would’ve.)

  3. Jacobite says:

    Something doesn’t sound right about this at all. Even in a backwater National Guard unit like I was a part of for 2/3 of my career, copies of 201 files and/or supporting documentation were almost always requested of a transfering soldier’s former unit, something that would quickly uncover something like this. Our full time unit admin was also fond of calling the former parent unit to get a feel for the kind of soldier we were accepting into our ‘family’.

  4. Virtual Insanity says:

    Like I said about this asshole before…I just don’t see how he got to Rucker without some help.

    Whether from the unit in Texas or otherwise.

  5. fm2176 says:

    I don’t know who put this guy in, but all Prior Service Applicants that come to the Regular Army are required to have a REDD Report pulled and scanned into their electronic packet. Maybe it is just our MEPS, who knows, but they take it seriously down here. The REDD Report shows enlistment info, ASVAB scores, RE codes, etc, etc, regardless of branch of service.

    All PS documents (DD-214, NGB-22, etc) are scanned in and accessible to everyone from the Station Commander to battalion and MEPS personnel. Between the documents themselves and the interactions with the individual I believe this guy was either incredibly convincing or his recruiter incredibly stupid. Reserve recruiters are usually from the local area and served at one time with the local Reserve unit, so it is also possible the recruiter and/or members of the unit managed to circumvent SOP. I’d venture to say that he would not have made it onto Active Duty quite so easily.