BG Sinclair retires as LTC Sinclair

| June 20, 2014

Jeff sinclair

Scotty sends us a link to the Army Times which reports that Brigadier General Jeffrey Sinclair has been forced by the Secretary of the Army to retire as a Lieutenant Colonel, since that was the last grade at which he served “satisfactorily”.

This is the first time the Army has reduced a retiring general officer by two ranks in a decade, according to the service’s announcement Friday.

Sinclair, who in March pleaded guilty to having a three-year affair with a female subordinate, has already received a judge’s reprimand and a $20,000 fine.


The 51-year-old general had been accused of twice forcing the female captain to perform oral sex during the three-year affair, but the sexual assault charges were dropped as part of the plea deal. The prosecution for sexual assault crumbled after questions arose about his primary accuser’s credibility and whether military officials improperly rejected a previous plea deal because of political concerns.

McHugh said he is prevented by federal law from taking further action, and did what he called, “legally sustainable.”

I guess it means that he’ll have to buy the generic store-brand corn flakes instead of getting the Kellogg brand. Poor guy. Well, at least they didn’t bend his dog tags.

Category: Big Army

Comments (68)

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  1. MrBill says:

    He won’t starve, but he will suffer, in terms of pension, prestige, and future employment prospects. Every retirement check he receives, and every time he pulls out his LTC retired ID, he’ll be reminded of what he threw away because of his recklessness. Did he deserve worse? Perhaps so, but some measure of justice was done, I think.

    • Green Thumb says:

      He can always land a job with All-Points Logistics.

      It would actually be an upgrade over their current less than honorable COL.

    • UpNorth says:

      Future employment prospects? He’s a shoe-in for a job at MSNBC. He’ll fit right in at that place.

    • Luddite4Change says:

      This is all about optics/PR for the Army, with near zero practical effects.

      The only thing he losses is BG on his retired ID card and perhaps some short term employment prospects(with the caveat that I don’t know what the status of his security clearance is).

      As for retired pay, it’s still computed based on his highest 36 months of active duty earnings; almost all of that as an O-7. The SECARMY danced around that fact in his statement today (See below).

      McHugh said he is prevented by federal law from taking further action, and did what he called, “legally sustainable.”

      “During Capitol Hill hearings, I was asked whether Sinclair would receive a pension after proceedings were complete,” McHugh said. “Under federal law, if a person has earned a pension because of their years of service, they are entitled to those benefits; Congress might consider a change in the law that would allow greater flexibility and accountability.”

      Also, as his court martial did not direct that his discharge would be anything less than “honorable”, in accordance with the 10 USC 772 (e) he is still authorized to use the title of BG.

      10 USC 772 (e)

      (e) A person not on active duty who served honorably in time of war in the Army, Navy, Air Force, or Marine Corps may bear the title, and, when authorized by regulations prescribed by the President, wear the uniform, of the highest grade held by him during that war.

      • OldSoldier54 says:


        This POS should have received a Big Chicken Dinner … at the minimum.

        So I guess it is just optics …

        • Luddite4Change says:

          He is of course, still a turd.

        • Hondo says:

          OldSoldier54: commissioned officers cannot receive a BCD. If found guilty by a court-martial, they either receive a Dismissal (the equivalent of a DD) or are not discharged.

          Don’t ask me why; I’ve never understood that. But it’s what the UCMJ and MCM prescribe.

          Personally, I think the guy deserved Dismissal and some hard time. But I guess the court-martial panel and/or military judge decided to cut his family a break.

          On the flip side, an officer can receive a dismissal (DD equivalent) for literally ANY general court-martial conviction. For enlisted personnel, the maximum punishment specified in the MCM must include a BCD or DD for enlisted personnel to receive same on conviction.

          • Green Thumb says:

            Lack of a security clearance aside, he could always work with Turd Bolling at Ambassador Worldwide Protection Agency (both national and international).

            • Sparks says:

              Green Thumb…But he’s not a SEAL. Ambassador Worldwide Protection Agency wants and need SEALs. That’s their go to claim for clients.

    • rgr1480 says:

      Mebbys he can get on the same talk circuit as Slick Willie? But then again … Slick Willie wasn’t busted down two ranks when his time was up.


  2. nbcguy54 says:

    Gee, darn. Really gonna miss those Elvis sideburns and the additional shame he brought upon the Army.

  3. Thunderstixx says:

    Too bad, so sad, tell my Mom, tell my dad… That’s the way it goes, first your money, then your clothes !!!

  4. NR Pax says:

    Rule #1 for Officers and NCOs: DON’T STICK IT IN YOUR SUBORDINATES.


    Any questions? Do I really need to break out the Powerpoint slides?

    • Delilah T. says:

      You left out:

      Keep your pants zipped and your wick dry, dumbasses.

    • Arby says:

      Those aren’t the new SHARP approved rules. Please add:




    • Farflung Wanderer says:

      “Remember, gentlemen; flies spread disease, so keep yours closed!”

      I love “Band of Brothers”.

  5. David says:

    Cannot conceive of involuntary head from ANYONE being worth all that. Poor judgement and poor trade-off, LTC. Get used to hearing that.

    • Old Trooper says:

      If it was a 3 year affair; there wasn’t anything “forced”. What has happened to the Captain?

      • Matt says:

        When the affair started, she was a LT. I am not saying she is blameless, but the power to end the relationship (or not start it in the first place) rests with the senior.

        Also left out of the discussion was a lot of other misconduct not directly involved with this CPT.

        • Jacobite says:

          “but the power to end the relationship (or not start it in the first place) rests with the senior.”


        • Anonymous says:

          She seemed okay with it as long as he didn’t jam it down her throat when she didn’t feel like it… just sayin’.

  6. 2/17 Air Cav says:

    Depending upon how long he lives, that may be the single most expensive piece of ass in US Army history. He already was fined $20,000. I don’t know how his wife is taking this but even w/o alimony, the loss in pension money makes this some mighty expensive stuff. Mighty expensive.

    • Sparks says:

      2/17 Air Cav…He should have stuck with what he could have gotten on the old “2 piastres alley”. But that was way before his time.

    • Hondo says:

      Assuming his pension is based on LTC pay scales, if he lives another 30 years a “quick and dirty” calculation shows lost retirement income of about $890,000 – in constant 2014 dollars. Factor in inflation adjustments, and that’s likely somewhere around $1.5M to $2.0M in lost current-year income over the next 30 years.

      Expensive? Indeed. And if the allegations that weren’t proven are true, he still got off damned easy.

      • Sparks says:

        Hondo…Thanks. I had no idea what a GO’s pension was. I am kinda surprised. Yep, he did get off easy.

      • Stacy0311 says:

        Check with S1/pay.
        This dirtbag might get a small break.
        Ritirement is calculated on the average of the individuals highest base pay. So he might be a LTC(R) getting retirement based on 1 year as a BG and 2 years as a COL (average monthly salary).
        sucks but could happen

        • Charlie Six says:

          His High 3 Calculation will be based off the last grade at which he served honorably, which in the case is LTC. Something similar happened in the 90s when Sergeant Major of the Army McKinney got in legal trouble and was reduced to Master Sergeant. He retired but under Title 10 as it was then written, received retirement pay based on his time as a Sergeant Major and the SMA. The law was amended to prevent such a thing from happening again.

        • Devtun says:

          Seriously doubt it. Jeffery’s time as BG & COL was not certified as “satisfactory” by the SEC Army…his pension is almost certainly gonna be calculated on high 3 as LTC (last grade served satisfactorily). Oh yeah…a financial a$$ rape.

          From what I understand, a few tweaks were made to DoD regulations especially after fmr SMA McKinney was demoted to MSG, and still ended up collecting pension of a SMA.

          • Stacy0311 says:

            Did not know that.
            I retract my comment in light of new information.

          • Luddite4Change says:

            The retired pay for McKinney was a different situation, as he was actually reduced a grade, which would have made his final pay based on that of an E-8 as opposed to an E-9+ (+ being the senior enlisted member of a service).

            Congress years earlier had passed legislation which permitted a member who had been a Service Senior Enlisted to have that figure used in computation of retired pay in the event that the individual took an other position that did not carry the extra pay (yes, this actually did happen on multiple occasions in the 60’s and 70’s). After McKinney Congress put in a condition that the service as a senior enlisted member had to be “satisfactory” to be eligible for retired pay purposes.

            In Sinclair’s case he was not reduced on active duty (he only looses rank and position on the retired list), his retired pay is still based on his highest 36 paychecks.

            Review the statement of the SECARMY for what it does and does not say. If his retired pay was going to be based on O-5 with 29 years, they would have stated it in the press release.

            • Devtun says:

              It appears BG Sinclair understands and agreed to a reduction in retirement benefits…presumably those of a LTC. May be i’m misreading something in the Army Times article…

              “While retirement benefits are mandated by federal law, there is a requirement that an individual must have served satisfactorily in rank before receiving those benefits,” McHugh said in a statement. “Sinclair displayed a pattern of inappropriate and at times illegal behavior both while serving as a brigadier general and a colonel. I therefore decided there was sufficient evidence and cause to deny him those benefits.”

              Sinclair’s attorney Richard Scheff, in response to the Army’s announcement today, said the general had “consistently taken responsibility for his mistakes and agreed to a reduction in retirement benefits.” He also noted that until Sinclair’s reduction in retirement grade takes effect when he leaves active duty in several weeks, he remains an Army brigadier general.

              • Luddite4Change says:

                He may well have agreed to that in the plea bargain, but he also was to be punished at the lesser of the plea deal or the judge’s decision. As he was only fined $20K, I’m suspect.

                The rules are not as clear cut as one would expect in this kind of circumstance. Of course, these types of circumstances don’t happen everyday either.

                It would not surprise me if Congress revisits this issue, given the plethora of GO/FO misconduct that seems to have become public of late.

                IMHO. I would like to see GO/FO retired pay initially capped at the max O-6 point. And then be gradually increased as we see how a GO/FOs long term decisions panned out. In a way, it would be more like paying deferred compensation much like senior officers in civilian companies receive. Just food for thought.

            • Charlie Six says:

              The statement seems clear to me.

              From the NYT:
              “While retirement benefits are mandated by federal law, there is a requirement that an individual must have served satisfactorily in rank before receiving those benefits,” the Army secretary, John M. McHugh, said. “Sinclair displayed a pattern of inappropriate and at times illegal behavior both while serving as a brigadier general and a colonel.”

              The rank reduction will carry a financial toll for General Sinclair, 51, who an Army spokeswoman said would lose nearly $34,000 a year in retirement pay because of the downgrade. He will keep all of his other retirement benefits, such as eligibility for health care coverage.

  7. Sapper3307 says:

    Cant wait for the book.

  8. Bobo says:

    So much for that GO and O6 parking at the commisary. There might be someone willing to pick him up as a contractor, but that is a lot of baggage to carry on the unemployment line.

  9. COB6 says:

    So, when does Patraeus get demoted?

    • OldSoldier54 says:

      Not holding my breath …

    • Redleg JO says:

      I might be wrong but if i remember correctly , his affair started when he was a civilian hence though they are legally allowed to prosecute him, no one ever would, particularly for a purely military crime.

      • David says:

        IIRC, it started when he was the ISAF CG and MAJ Broadwell was on his staff (pun intended)

  10. FatCircles0311 says:

    Right in ze balls.

    Where is the article regarding the Captain being punished?

  11. Devtun says:

    Jeffrey Sinclair has company on being stripped GO status…

    BG Bryan T. Roberts, the fmr commander of Ft. Jackson, was retired as a COL by Sec Army McHugh…

    • Izzy says:

      odd how nothing was ever printed or reported in any SC papers about Roberts demotion to Col or fact there were multiple women. Buried deep within Post article about different General.

  12. Sparks says:

    “I guess it means that he’ll have to buy the generic store-brand corn flakes instead of getting the Kellogg brand. Poor guy.”

    Thanks Jonn. I needed that. ROTFLMAO!

  13. SGT Ted says:

    He can get together with Sanchez and Karpinski for a stitch and bitch. They will be fit company.

    • OldSoldier54 says:

      Ah, yes. How could I have forgotten those two dog turds?

      • SGT Ted says:

        Well, it was 10 years ago.

        My unit was at Abu Ghraib and was under Karpinski and thus, Sanchez. I will never forget those tools.

  14. OAE CPO USN Ret says:

    Important retirement tip:

    Keep your [reproductive organs] out of the muster report.

    Or to put it in a more nautical sense. There are two ways to get relived from command. Both involve touching bottom.

  15. Old Trooper says:

    If the last rank he served “satisfactorally” at was LTC; how the hell did he make it to BG?

    • Sgt K says:

      I was wondering the same thing.

    • Hondo says:

      His misconduct as COL and BG was not known until after he’d been promoted to BG. Specifically, he admitted it began when was still a COL and extended into the time he was serving as a BG.

      The misconduct was deemed serious enough by the SECARMY to render his service as COL and BG unsat. Since no evidence of misconduct as a LTC was forthcoming, his service at LTC was deemed satisfactory – thus making LTC the highest grade at which he served successfully.

      • Old Trooper says:

        Ok, that makes sense. He started “pitching woo” with the CPT when he was a COL and she was a LT.

        • GDcontractor says:

          “pitching woo”. Wonder if he would have gotten in trouble if he was a catcher instead of a pitcher? (If ya know what I mean) My guess is that he would have been promoted.

  16. NavCWORet says:

    You’d think, as BG, he’d have gotten a haircut before his courts martial. He looks like a reservist.

  17. 1AirCav69 says:

    One thing daddy told me years ago. “Son, don’t never stick you pen in the company ink. No good can come from it.” I think the Lt.Col knew that.

  18. Valerie Conley says:

    Apparently, as to how he made BG — he had, on paper, served satisfactorily, but when all this came out, and all the other things that didn’t make the news because no one stuck their appendage in anyone, the Secretary of the Army has the power to state that the time served in those two grades was not served satisfactorily and to have his ratings changed. Thus, he gets to learn how the rest of us peons live.

  19. Jacobite says:

    So his retired pay is conceivably based on his last 3 years a LT COL?

    Woopdy-doo, that’s potentially 6k to 8k per month, meaning he’ll be retiring at well over 2.5 times the most I’ve ever made in my life. With benefits no less.

    Ya, some punishment. Not.

  20. Herbert's J Messkit says:

    Well he should at least be able to afford a haircut

  21. Retired Master says:

    Nothing like R.H.I.P.

    Anenlisted person wouldn’t be getting anything!

  22. John "Faker 6" Giduck says:

    LTC Sinclair got off easy. All I got at the end of my 58 day career in the Army was a brown t-shirt.


    John “Faker 6” Giduck

  23. Beretverde says:

    I remember a certain president who tried to play the “CIC card” and use the Soldiers and Sailors act to stop the court proceedings. Hell if he really wanted to play soldier, he would have been convicted of adultery.

    This stuff has been going on forever…the bible and David sending the husband out to the frontline in battle is a prime example.

    There are reasons for today’s rules.

  24. SJ says:

    I thought a BJ wasn’t sex? That’s what Bill said. And she was also a subordinate. And the O5 didn’t use a cigar. That we know of.

    The O5 needs to join me sometime at the Camp Lejeune barbershop where “how do you want it” is just an out of curiosity question because you’re going to get it the only way they know how.

    This guy is a disgrace.

  25. Sparks says:

    So will he still be eligible for his VA Home Loan Benefit? /sacr off now/