War Against Men in the Military: Cases Bear Shocking Similarities

While reading a WRAL.com article today, I couldn’t help but notice shocking similarities between the sexual assault prosecutions of Army Brig. Gen. Jeffrey Sinclair and Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart, the man whose wrongful conviction is chronicled in my first nonfiction book, Three Days In August.

Click image above to read other articles in my series, "War on Men in the Military."

Click image above to read other articles in my series, “War on Men in the Military.”

One example can be found in the three paragraphs that follow an explanation of how the military judge in the case decided to prosecute despite a recommendation from the lead prosecutor that General Sinclair’s plea to a charge of adultery be accepted. The example begins in paragraph four as follows:

The defense contends that the captain, who served with Sinclair in Iraq and Afghanistan, committed perjury in a January hearing about finding text messages form Sinclair on an old cellphone, making her a poor witness on which to build a case against the general.

The captain said in the January hearing that she came across the old phone in December and charged it up to see if there was anything on it that would affect Sinclair’s court-martial. A defense forensics expert contradicted her testimony, saying she had turned the phone on several times in the months before she said she found it packed in a box.

The defense argues in the motion that the Army continues to press the case only to support a get-tough policy against sex assault in the military.

Click image above to read reviews of Three Days In August.

Click image above to read reviews of Three Days In August.

Notice the word, perjury, and how a forensics expert proved it? Apparently, perjury by a female in a military sexual assault case isn’t cause for concern.

In the case of Stewart, a highly-decorated Green Beret combat veteran, several instances of perjury surfaced during and after his court-martial.

Two that surfaced during the trial involved a German police detective and a taxi driver whose memory issues are highlighted in the article, German Police Detective Has Memory Issues Like Accuser.

One arose during the pre-sentencing phase and involved the accuser offering a strange definition of “contact.”

Yet another was brought to the court’s attention by a long-time friend of the accuser who made a post-trial statement that should have netted Stewart a new trial.

I, for one, can’t wait to read the trial transcript if or when General Sinclair’s case reaches the trial phase. Why? Because I suspect it will be as chock full of half-truths, lies and innuendo as Stewart’s trial was as the War on Men in the Military continues.

UPDATE 3/16/2014 at 8:13 p.m. Central: Sexual assault charges dropped against general after case tainted by political influence.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct '11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May '13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct ’11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May ’13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

V-MAIL: World War II Soldier Writes to Parents Back Home

Before there was e-mail, Twitter, Facebook or any of myriad ways for American Soldiers to communicate with loved ones back home, there was V-MAIL.  Below is the text of a V-Mail (a.k.a., “Victory Mail”) message dated Oct. 10, 1944.  Written by a 20-year-old Army private serving on the the front lines of war in Northwestern Germany, it carried thoughtful messages as it was delivered to his parents in Promise City, Iowa:

Vmail Exterior

This is what the outside of a V-MAIL message looked like in 1944.

Dear Dad + Mom,

Vmail Ltr

Below an address block, this is what the interior of a V-MAIL message looked like in 1944.

I just finished a couple letters so I think I’ll write a few lines to you.  The sky is very clear tonight and it is turning awfully chilly.  By morning it will be very nippy I imagine.  My socks are a little damp so I am going to put on a dry pair before going to bed.  Between the bumps, cold + my rifle in bed with me to keep it dry, I admit I have had more comfortable beds.  We’re supposed to get two more blankets soon so it will improve the situation alot.  I hope.  I got three letters today.  They started with the eighteenth, the first mail I got + have been going backwards.  Today they dated back to the 11th of Sept.  I heard you weren’t feeling so good about that time.  I hope you are much better now, mom.  You should take your regular vacation in Florida again this winter.  Right?  Well it’s time to put the cat out and wind the clock for tonight.  Goodnite.

Your loving son, Ted.

Dad's Official Army Photo

Dad’s Official Army photo

The American Soldier who wrote the letter above was my dad.  Fortunately, he and all three of his older brothers who served during World War II came home alive!

Veterans Day remains special to me, in part, because I served and several of my siblings, in-laws and friends also wore the uniforms of this country’s Armed Forces.  It is, however, my dad’s Army experiences that stand out the most.  To learn more about those experiences, read the 12-part series, My Father’s War Stories from World War II, which debuted in this space May 25, 2007.

Final note:  Please share this with anyone you think might appreciate it.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct '11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May '13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct ’11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May ’13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Help Me Find World War II Hero

While doing some legal gun trading Thursday, I struck up a conversation with Greg Grimes, co-owner of Trail Creek Trade Co., and the visit I expected to last about 15 minutes turned into a 45-minute stay during which I listened to a man tell me about a work of art adorning the wall of his antique firearms shop in the St. Louis suburb of St. Ann.

Do you know this man?

Do you know this man?

After negotiating the terms of a transaction involving two very old handguns, conversation followed and Grimes began to lament the declining interest many Americans have in guns as well as history in general.  A few anecdotes later, he directed my attention to a black-framed portrait of an American Soldier hanging on the wall and an associate of his lifted it off the wall and brought it over.

Grimes proceeded to tell me he came into possession of the framed artwork after a friend, who had rescued it from a pile of things bound for a dumpster and then held on to it for a decade, gave it to him.  Since then, it has hung on the wall at the gun shop.

In addition to the fact that the artwork features a pencil sketch of an American Soldier, several other aspects make it special:

• It appears to have been drawn and signed by one of the German POWs for whom the Soldier was responsible;

• It features an honorable message (i.e., “In memory of your prisoners of war”) between one-time adversaries in a horrific war;

• It bears a date, 2 June 1945, that came only 25 days after the date on which hostilities in Europe came to an official end (i.e., “V-E Day” or “Victory in Europe Day”); and

• Finally, the back side of the portrait bears what appears to be the signatures of a total of eight German POWs, one of which matches the signature of the artist on the front.

I asked Grimes if he had ever tried to locate any of the people whose names appear on the piece, front and back.  He said he had, but without success.  That’s when I told him I would take photos of the piece and share details about it with my online readers, readers of my nonfiction books, Three Days In August and THE CLAPPER MEMO (both of which can be ordered here), my contacts in the traditional and non-traditional news media worldwide and with my friends in patriotic and veterans organizations.

I don’t know if the man in the portrait is still alive, but my goal — and that of Grimes — is to see that the portrait is returned to this man or to a member of his extended family prior to June 2, 2015, the 70th Anniversary of the date on the portrait.  To accomplish this goal, we need your help.

Did You Know This Hero LoRez 11-02-13If you recognize him, please send details to me via email at BobMcCartyWrites (at) gmail (dot) com or leave a comment below.  If you do not recognize him but want to help, please share this information far and wide.  Thanks in advance for your help!

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct '11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May '13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct ’11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May ’13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Today Marks 4th Anniversary of Green Beret’s Bogus Conviction on Sexual Assault Charges

EDITOR’S NOTE:  Four years ago today, Army Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart was found guilty by members of a court-martial panel of several sexual assault-related charges despite the fact Army prosecutors presented no evidence of any kind to prove his guilt.  In short, the highly-decorated Green Beret combat veteran became one of the early victims of the War on Men in the Military.  Slightly modified for stand-alone publication, the excerpt (below) from my book, Three Days In August: A U.S. Army Special Forces Soldier’s Fight For Military Justice, provides graphic details of what happened the night after SFC Stewart learned he had been found guilty.

Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart

Kelly A. Stewart

“So, they find me guilty.  It’s late at night.  In an instant, my whole life got flushed right down the toilet,” said Kelly A. Stewart, recalling the verdict that changed his life just before midnight on August 19, 2009.  “I am smart enough to know that my life is screwed.  The rest of my life.  No matter what.  My life is done.

“Clearly, I felt that I was shafted, and I knew there was no way to fix it,” the career soldier and Green Beret explained.  “This is an analogy I use.  It might come across as messed up, but this is my analogy, and this is why I chose to do what I did.

“I was not going to have everybody do prison time with me,” said Stewart, recalling his thoughts after a court-martial panel found him guilty of sex crimes against a German woman and handed down a sentence that included a reduction in rank, from E-7 to E-1, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, eight years of confinement and a recommendation for dishonorable discharge upon release.

“I wasn’t going to go to prison and have my kids have to go through having their dad in prison and my wife having to stand by my side and go without a husband for years —- and, at that time, I didn’t know the length of the years,” said Stewart, a Special Forces combat medic and Level One-trained sniper.  “I didn’t know the length of my sentence; I just knew that I was found guilty.”

That’s when he made a decision.

“I never thought I was going to prison,” Stewart said.  “When I got back after (being convicted), I had a reality check in the hotel room” at the Krystal Inn, the on-post hotel where he was staying near the court building where his trial was taking place at Rose Barracks in Vilseck, Germany.

About the only plans he made took place during the last intermission in the courtroom before his guilty verdict was announced.  After calling his wife and telling her he wouldn’t be coming home soon, Stewart also called his bank and transferred all of the money in his account into his wife’s account.

“I already knew what I was gonna do,” he recalled.

Sgt. 1st Class Kelly Stewart

Kelly Stewart

Back in their room at the Krystal Inn, Stewart and his buddy, Sergeant First Class Detrick Hampton, laid in their beds and talked most of the night until Sergeant Hampton fell asleep around 5 a.m.  Less than an hour later, Stewart began to implement his hastily-crafted plan.

Careful not to wake Sergeant Hampton, Stewart got up out of his bed about an hour later, put on his Army Combat Uniform and low-quarter shoes and collected a few items—including a combat knife and a rubber band—he thought he might need.  Oddly, he left his black Army jump boots in the room.

Quietly, he walked out of his second-floor room at the Krystal Inn where, even after he was found guilty, he was not kept under guard — an indication, perhaps, that some in the Army still didn’t think he was as dangerous as the charges, eventual conviction and news media coverage of his case might have indicated.  He had, after all, never been deemed a danger to others or a flight risk.

Because he had not planned to go away for a long time, Stewart didn’t prepare by gathering lots of clothes, money and 16 passports.  Instead, he ensured only that he had enough money for gas to go where he needed to go to take his own life.  And with three combat tours in Iraq and other stints in Kosovo and Macedonia under his belt, he knew enough about medicine to make it happen.

Once outside the hotel room, Stewart walked the short distance to a staircase in the center of the building, down a single flight of stairs and through an open-air hallway out to the parking lot where his rental car, an Audi Q5, was parked.

He drove the SUV a short distance to the Shoppette —- the name the Army and Air Force Exchange Service gives its convenience stores located on military installations -— where he purchased a laundry list of items:  three 50-count bottles of Tylenol caplets, one 72-count package of Sominex tablets, two 16-ounce bottles of Gatorade Riptide Rush, some writing paper and a couple of pencils.

“I thought about how other people have killed themselves, and they generally either hurt or make a display for other people, but I didn’t want to do is be found dead somewhere where some kid was gonna see me (and) I didn’t want to get drunk and drive down the road and do something irresponsible where I could injure someone else or another family,” he said.  Instead, he tried to pick an out-of-the-way place close by, in the woods, where he knew only an adult would find him.  In the end, he opted for a wooded park area at a nearby training range.

Kelly Stewart

Kelly Stewart

After leaving the Shoppette, he knew he had to reach his destination by 6:30 a.m., the time at which the perimeter road that encircled two Army posts and the training range in between them would close so troops could use it for physical training (i.e., “PT”).

Immediately after pulling off the road and parking his car near a trail, Stewart drank about a fourth of the contents of each Gatorade bottle.  Next, he used the flat surface of a tree stump and the flat edge of a large combat knife to methodically crush 150 Tylenol tablets (500 mg) and 50 Sominex tablets.  Finally, he scooped the now-powdered medicines into the bottles and shook them up.

From his experience in hospital emergency rooms, he knew the crushed tablets, when swallowed, would have a much more toxic effect than coated tablets designed to reach the stomach before their contents were released.  In addition, the sleep medicine would simply make it easier for him to endure his passage from life to death.

Next, he used a 12-foot length of CAT-5 cable that he had had in his room at the Krystal Inn to make a hangman’s noose on an A-frame-style deer stand he found in the woods only a kilometer or two away from the court building.

“I measured the CAT-5 so my feet wouldn’t touch the ground,” Stewart explained.  “There was a base I could stand on to get my neck in the noose, but the base was high enough that, when I passed out, my feet wouldn’t touch the ground.”

At one point before he put the noose to work, a German forest marshal working on the German-American post drove by, saw Stewart in his vehicle and exchanged pleasantries with him.  Upon learning from Stewart that he was “just waiting on doing some training here,” the forest marshal drove away.

Kelly Stewart

Kelly Stewart

In retrospect, Stewart said, “I think that was my divine intervention, telling me, ‘Don’t do it, stupid.’”  But he didn’t listen.

As soon as the forest marshal left, around 9:15 a.m., Stewart began consuming the drink in a process he compared to a Selection event—one of the grueling steps he survived en route to the SF Qualification Course.  In other words, consuming the drink—and keeping it down—was very difficult.

Trying to hold it down was difficult.  Every once in a while, he found himself throwing it back up into the bottle, because it burned so much on the way down.

“Everybody says, ‘I’m gonna kill myself,” he said, “but, to really do it and be successful is an event in itself.”

Why Tylenol, Sominex and Gatorade?  It was part of his plan.

“In SF, we have this acronym called a PACE plan—Primary, Alternate, Contingency and Emergency.  Everything that we do has a four-step plan in there…a redundancy thing…

“I had a PACE plan, but it wasn’t very good,” he said, noting the fact that he had survived.

“The Tylenol was, I guess, the primary thing,” he said, explaining that he had seen enough Tylenol overdoses in emergency rooms to know that it was an effective, but very painful technique.

“The alternate was the sleeping medicine.

“The CAT-5 cable was the contingency.”

Kelly Stewart shakes hands with country music star Toby Keith at an undisclosed location in Iraq.

Kelly Stewart shakes hands with country music star Toby Keith at an undisclosed location in Iraq.

Consuming the toxic cocktail took close to 40 minutes.

“Basically, when I started feeling myself get drowsy, I knew it was time and kind of stood up in this little A-frame deer stand, and I had the CAT-5 cable,” Stewart said.  “I had it double-knotted, and I used a Prusik knot.”  Similar to a slip knot, it was invented by an Austrian for mountaineering and climbing purposes.

While waiting for the drugs to take effect, Stewart wrote one letter each to his wife and daughters, to his parents and extended family, to members of his SF team, to Judge Kuhfahl and to the members of the court-martial panel.  After writing the letters, he put a rubber band around them and placed his Tag Heuer wristwatch, his wedding ring and the money he had had in his pocket on top of them next to his vehicle.  Accompanying those items were instructions for whoever found him to make sure the letters were delivered and the watch and ring were returned to his wife.

It was approaching 10:30 a.m., the time the court was set to convene, and Stewart realized people would start looking for him soon.  Before he could worry too much about being discovered, however, the drugs began to take effect.

“I get drowsy (and) I realize, ‘Hey, it’s time,’ and said some prayers, because I knew I was gonna black out,” he said.  “I had to work my way over to where this hangman’s noose was, because I had to basically kind of climb a little bit on it so that, when I passed out, (it) would catch me” as the contingency and emergency elements of his PACE plan.  That was the last thing he remembered.

To read the remainder of this chapter and learn more about Stewart’s life and the events before and after those described above, order the book, Three Days In August: A U.S. Army Special Forces Soldier’s Fight For Military Justice.  It’s available in paperback and ebook at Amazon.com.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct '11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May '13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct ’11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May ’13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Book About Green Beret’s Bogus Sexual Assault Conviction to Mark Second Anniversary

To mark the upcoming second anniversary of the release of my first nonfiction book, Three Days In August: A U.S. Army Special Forces Soldier’s Fight For Military Justice, my publisher has reduced prices on the book!

"Three Days In August" by Bob McCartyReleased in October 2011, Three Days In August chronicles the life story of U.S. Army Sergeant First Class Kelly A. Stewart. A highly-decorated combat veteran, Stewart had an unblemished military record and stood among the best of the best as one of the world’s most-elite warriors — a Green Beret. Everything changed after he was accused of raping and kidnapping by a 28-year-old German woman. The “he said, she said” trial, during which he was found guilty of several sexual assault-related charges, took place during three days in August 2009.

The ebook is now available at the retail price of US $3.99.  Sometime during the next 24 to 72 hours*, the paperback [previously US $14.99 (plus s/h/i)] will be available at the retail price of US $11.99 (plus s/h/i). Prices outside the United States will be based on these new U.S. prices. Order your copy today!

*UPDATE 8/15/2013 at 9:20 a.m. Central:  For reasons unclear to me, Amazon has, thusfar, refused to lower the price on the paperback version of the book.  As soon as the price does change, I will post another update here.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct '11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May '13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August (Oct ’11) and THE CLAPPER MEMO (May ’13). To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

Comparing Messages Sent by Accusers — DoD War on Men

Today, as part of my continuing series about the Department of Defense War on Men, I compare the handling of evidence in military court-martial cases to the handling of similar evidence during the prosecution of a civilian sexual assault case making news in Ohio West Virginia.

ABC News broadcast a story today about the case of two Steubenville, Ohio W.Va., high school football players who stand accused of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl while she was drunk at an “alcohol-fueled party” the night of Aug. 11, 2012. If the report is reliable, then it appears prosecutors will rely heavily upon text messages and mobile phone photos exchanged by party attendees — and, perhaps, others — as they pursue guilty verdicts against the 16- and 17-year-old boys who stand accused.

Kelly Stewart returns from a mission in Iraq.

Kelly Stewart returns from a mission in Iraq.

Army Green Beret Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart, the man whose life story and wrongful conviction are chronicled in my book, Three Days In August, probably would have benefited from having members of his court-martial panel made aware of some text messages sent by his accuser. But it didn’t happen. Instead, the highly-decorated combat veteran was convicted of a handful of sexual assault-related crimes and sentenced to eight years confinement at the U.S. Military Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kan.

Several months later, however, Sergeant Stewart’s defense team had the rare opportunity to present new testimony during a post-trial hearing in Germany. During that hearing, many people testified, essentially calling out the 28-year-old German woman who had accused the Solider of raping and kidnapping her in his Stuttgart hotel room as a liar.

Did it get him a new trial? No.

Not even the testimony of Tamara Buehler, a woman who had known the accuser for more than 10 years as a friend, housemate and employer, earned him a new trial. She reported receiving a text message from the accuser within 24 hours of the night she spent with Sergeant Stewart.

In the text message, Buehler said, the accuser described a lecherous night during which she “found my master.” Of course, she took this to mean that there was sex of the sadomasochist type and noted that there was no talk of something happening that the accuser did not like. And that wasn’t all! Buehler also stated that the accuser had claimed her encounter with Sergeant Stewart was “great SEX.”

Incredibly, the military judge ignored the testimony of Buehler and several others who combined to paint a portrait of the accuser as a woman who had had sex with at least two more men between the day she met Sergeant Stewart and the start of the court-martial proceedings. Her testimony takes on additional weight when one realizes the accuser had testified during the trial that she could no longer be around men after her night with the Soldier. More details here.

U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair, the deputy commanding general of support with the 82nd Airborne Division and Regional Command-South, speaks with Afghan media outside of a school near Forward Operating Base Howz-e-Madad in Kandahar, Afghanistan, Nov. 16, 2011. Sinclair was attending an open house, where Afghan students received backpacks full of school supplies. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Amanda Hils/Released)

U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair, the deputy commanding general of support with the 82nd Airborne Division and Regional Command-South, speaks with Afghan media outside of a school near Forward Operating Base Howz-e-Madad in Kandahar, Afghanistan, Nov. 16, 2011. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Amanda Hils/Released)

Now to a more recent case — that of Brig. Gen. Jeffrey A. Sinclair; if he receives the same treatment as Sergeant Stewart, he’s likely to receive an even longer prison sentence.

In what appears to be a smart move, however, General Sinclair’s defense team has gone on the offensive, launching a website, Sinclair Innocence, where one can read important details about the case which, for the most part, seems to be going unreported by mainstream news media outlets.

Under the tab, The Truth Behind the Case, several questions appear along with answers that tilt in favor of the accused general. Two paragraphs from the bottom of the page, links to journal entries and text messages — described as having been sent by the accuser to General Sinclair — appear to reveal much about the consensual nature of their relationship. If genuine, the documents also seem to shed much light on the mental state of the general’s accuser.

While it will be interesting to see how the case of the high school football players turns out, I will be more interested in General Sinclair’s case, hoping to see evidence of fairness and truth in the midst of DoD’s War on Men.

Order Books Graphic LR 6-15-13

Bob McCarty is the author of Three Days In August and THE CLAPPER MEMO. To learn more about either book or to place an order, click on the graphic above.

German Police Detective Has Memory Issues

Unlike most people who read reporter Nancy Montgomery‘s article published Saturday in Stars and Stripes, I noticed something terribly wrong in some of the comments attributed to German police detective Daniel Lorch. His words conflicted with the real-life events chronicled in my book, Three Days In August, which chronicles the life story of former Army Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart and the military justice debacle that ended his stellar career as a Green Beret and landed him behind bars at Fort Leavenworth.

Kelly A Stewart with Book

Kelly A. Stewart with copy of book.

About halfway into the Stripes article, Montgomery shared comments made by Detective Lorch about his experience as an investigator and his personal opinion “that (Stewart) was guilty” of a variety of sexual assault-related charges stemming from a one-night stand involving the highly-decorated Special Forces soldier and a 28-year-old German woman. The reporter did not, however, include any comments by the detective about the complete lack of physical evidence and eyewitnesses to the alleged crimes.

Next, Montgomery attributed a statement to the detective about a taxi driver being among the people (plural) who had allegedly seen Stewart’s accuser the morning she left his hotel and later provided corroborating trial testimony. Apparently, the reporter did not ask the detective for details about those people. Nor did she ask about their testimony during the trial. Why? Because, contrary to what the detective said, only the taxi driver testified as a witness during the trail. Additional witnesses to her departure from the hotel could not be found.

Finally, Montgomery quoted Detective Lorch on the matter of what the taxi driver allegedly saw when she picked up the accuser outside Stewart’s hotel:

“He described, very detailed, very clearly, her physical damage,” Lorch said. “He was sure something very bad had happened to this woman.”

The detective repeatedly referred to the taxi driver in the masculine sense when, in reality, the taxi driver was a middle-age woman with memory issues. I highlighted those issues in the book and in an Oct. 7, 2011, post. An excerpt from the post appears below:

During questioning six months before the trial, according to official court documents, the taxi driver told German police officials, “I’m sorry I don’t see her in front of my eyes anymore right now,” later adding, “I believe she had blonde dyed hair. I don’t remember her clothing or age right now anymore.”

During the trial one year after she had allegedly picked up Stewart’s 28-year-old accuser in front of the Stuttgart-Marriott Hotel in Sindelfingen, Germany, the taxi driver was able to remember accurate details about Stewart’s accuser (i.e., that she was wearing knee-high boots, had long black hair, etc.) that she wasn’t able to remember when it should have been fresh on her mind. A miracle perhaps or was it coaching by prosecutors that helped her “improve” her memory?

Montgomery’s article came 24 days after she had contacted me via email, informing me that she was interested in doing a story about the latest development in the Stewart case, had read my website and wanted to talk.

In a written reply to Montgomery, I told her I had spent a lot of time one year earlier with John Vandiver, a Stuttgart-based Stripes reporter, and that the effort — via phone and email — had yielded not a single story. Furthermore, I told her, I wasn’t excited about speaking with Stripes again and shared a link to a story I published April 19, 2012.

Montgomery persisted, however, and wrote that her story would be about the “latest legal step, the request for reconsideration” from the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.

KAS Stripes BOLO Poster

“Be On The Lookout” poster issued Aug. 20, 2009.

Because I had written about the CAAF-level step in the appeals process Nov. 27, 2012, I decided to make an offer to the reporter.

“Shoot me all of of your questions and let me know your deadline,” I wrote, “then I’ll do my best to answer them by your deadline while allowing time for follow up.”

Rather than shoot me a list of questions, however, Montgomery informed me that she was going to review some of what Vandiver had gathered when he had talked with me a year earlier. She said she didn’t want to “duplicate some of the work he already did with you and ask questions you’ve already answered. But I am wondering how you got involved in the case. I don’t have a deadline yet.”

Montgomery was, of course, referring to a Nov. 21, 2011, phone interview I gave to Vandiver. It was followed by several email messages and resulted in three articles — #1, #2 and #3 — being published early in 2012. Unfortunately, all were published by yours truly, not Stripes.

“Nancy, I talked with John about how and why I became interested in the case,” I replied. “I also wrote a piece about it: http://threedaysinaugust.com/?p=1136.”

And that was that.

Montgomery did not forward any more questions or make any further attempts to obtain my input. In fact, her name did not appear on my radar again until today when Stripes published her report about the status of Stewart’s appeals process — a report from which she not only omitted my name and the name of my book, but failed to share critical details I had published Thursday in an update to my Nov. 27 piece, Green Beret’s Defense Attorneys Cite Ineffective Counsel During Trial, Ask Court to Reconsider:

UPDATE 12/20/2012 at 8:30 a.m. Central: Bad news received from the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces: “On consideration of Appellant’s petition for reconsideration of this Court’s order issued November 15, 2012, it is, by the Court, this, 19th day of December, 2012, ORDERED: That said petition for reconsideration is hereby denied. For the Court, /s/ William A. DeCicco, Clerk of the Court.”

To read the never-before-published details about Stewart’s wrongful conviction, read the book, Three Days In August. Based on 18 months of research, interviews with the key players and access to the actual Record of Trial, this book is available in paperback and ebook via most online booksellers, including Amazon.com.