Tag Archives: Stewart

Wife Offers Details About Wrongly-Accused Husband’s Case

Though I’ve written about many military justice cases involving men fighting false sexual assault allegations, I think the words of those directly impacted by the false allegations and military trials that follow carry more weight. Therefore, I’m sharing the content of a message I received today from a woman who went through the nightmare of her military husband’s court-martial and conviction. For reasons that should become obvious to you as you read her words, the names and personal information have been changed to protect their identities.

Join the fight to help wrongly-convicted men receive military justice.

Shown above with Bob McCarty are (clockwise from upper left): MSgt. Mike Silva, Air Force; Maj. Christian “Kit” Martin, Army; Sgt. 1st Class Kelly Stewart, Army; and Sgt. Todd Knight, Army. These military men represent but a handful of the men who’ve been caught up in the Pentagon’s sexual assault witch hunt.

Hello, Mr. McCarty:

I know you receive messages from many families, so I am not sure if you remember me, but we communicated several years ago about my husband, Phil. Phil and I started dating while he was going through a divorce. He was (wrongfully) convicted the following year when his now ex-wife accused him of forcible sodomy after he and I started dating. Although this tragedy has made things very hard at times, we have had the happiest relationship and marriage for nearly eight years now. Anyhow, I read the article about Todd Knight and the letter from his mother, and it reminded me to reach out to you.

Although it has been very hard, Phil and I have moved on, as much as one can move on, from this tragedy. Much like Todd Knight’s mother, I am amazed at how my husband manages to keep pressing forward. We spent upwards of $40,000 fighting for custody of his children. Unfortunately, every time we would prevail and custody would be awarded to him, his ex-wife would take off in hiding long enough to have jurisdiction moved to another state. We could not financially afford to continue the fight and his ex-wife was starting to punish the kids for wanting to see him, so he made the very difficult decision to stop fighting in the hope that by doing so his ex-wife would stop punishing his daughters. He put his faith in God that he will watch over them and reunite them again someday. We have not seen the kids in over 5 years, sadly. His ex-wife has since accused yet another military member, her now-estranged second husband, of abuse. He is her 3rd service member victim, and we pray that all the children involved (Phil’s and her second husband’s) will somehow make it through this with minimal damage, or at the very least, that some day we can help them through any damage they have suffered as a result of this terrible situation.

The most troubling and heart breaking part of this is hearing so many people tell us that they cannot believe he was convicted. Even the sexual assault therapist he was ordered to meet with during confinement and the law enforcement officers and prosecutor in charge of enforcing his offender registration are in disbelief that he was convicted. His case was literally “he said, she said,” and she was accusing him of assault years after she claimed it occurred (and only after he had started dating someone new), but still he was convicted nonetheless.

On one hand, it makes him feel good to hear that people who are actually trained and experienced with these sort of matters truly believe in his innocence. On the other hand, it is a hard thing to swallow because, even in spite of that, there is nothing anyone can do about it.

Having this weighing over his head and losing out a on a relationship with his children are things that will always weigh heavy on his heart (their birthdays, father’s day and holidays are still very solemn for him), but we have moved on as much as one can from this.

Phil finally has a great job — a career he loves. We have a beautiful home and are starting a family. I suppose that is my intention of telling you all this — to let other families, other service members effected in this way know that they should continue to fight, but in any case, there is hope at rebuilding life after this kind tragedy. If ever we can provide support or a kind ear to other service members or families effected in this way, please feel free to tell them they may contact us.

Very best,
Name withheld

The story told in the letter above bears many striking similarities to other military justice cases I’ve followed during the four years since the release of Three Days In August, a nonfiction book in which I chronicle the life story and wrongful conviction of a highly-decorated combat veteran and elite Green Beret on bogus sexual assault allegations.

Stay tuned for more details about this story as I’m working to obtain copies of the Record of Trial and other documents related to this case. Inexplicably, according to the couple involved, the military branch in which he served said the ROT was “classified” and refused to give him a copy of it upon request. As incredible as that seems, nothing surprises me anymore when it’s related to the Pentagon’s sexual assault witch hunt.

UPDATE 11/6/2015 at Noon Central:  Though I’ve promised not to reveal the names of the players involved in the case outlined above, I located the ex-wife/accuser of “Phil” and discovered she maintains a presence on several social media platforms and has more than one pornographic web site as part of a business that uses sex-related words and imagery as its primary products. How the military justice system sided with her is beyond comprehension!

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Sniper: ‘I believed I had the ability to change the playing field’

When I asked a former Army Green Beret how many kills he had recorded as a sniper during three tours of duty in Iraq, he used a lot of words to explain how such numbers can be hard to tally but never gave me an actual number. He did, however, tell me this:  “For me it wasn’t the numbers. I went back over and over because I believed I had the ability to change the playing field.”

Former Army Green Beret Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart in Iraq.

Former Army Green Beret Sgt. 1st Class Kelly A. Stewart in Iraq.

While those words may sound like words spoken by the late Chris Kyle, whose legendary exploits as a Navy SEAL during four tours of duty in Iraq are portrayed in the blockbuster film, American Sniper, they were not. Instead, they were shared with me during an online conversation two days ago with Kelly Stewart, the former Army Green Beret sniper — and, later, sniper instructor  — whose life story is chronicled in my first nonfiction book, Three Days In August.

After watching the Clint Eastwood-directed American Sniper and after getting to know Stewart during 18 months spent researching, conducting interviews and writing Three Days In August and since the release of the book in October 2011, I stand by the admittedly-biased opinion I shared in my most-recent weekly recap — that is, that Stewart’s story, as it appears in Three Days In August, would make a better film than American Sniper.

How did I reach that conclusion? Allow me to explain.

American Sniper failed to deliver the kind of emotional impact I had anticipated. When I walked out of the theater, I felt as if I had not had been robbed in an odd sort of way that has nothing to do with the prices of tickets, drinks or snacks at the theater.

Maybe it’s because I’m so much closer to Stewart that I experienced a plethora of emotions — anger, sympathy and frustration, just to name a few — while working on Three Days In August. When you read the book, I think you’ll experience many of the same emotions — especially in a few select sections of the book.

Kelly A. Stewart's uniform was covered with signs of his life as a Top One Percent Special Forces Soldier.

Kelly A. Stewart’s uniform was covered with signs of his life as a Top One Percent Special Forces Soldier.

During the courtroom scene, as Stewart faces a possible life sentence, you’ll applaud him for refusing to answer questions from the prosecutor when, by answering those questions in an open courtroom, he would have revealed classified information and violated his code of conduct.

You might find yourself having a hard time deciding what advice to give Stewart following his moment of decision after the court-martial panel issues its verdict at the end of the second day of the military trial.

And you might find yourself welling up with pride for Stewart while reading the chapter, The Last Mission In Iraq. In that chapter, a Green Beret describes serving with Stewart for eight months in 2006 when both were members of a Special Operations Task Force Operations Detachment Alpha (a.k.a., “A-Team”). It includes this description of a scene in which Stewart embodied the prototypical war hero portrayed by actors like John Wayne and Sylvester Stallone in so many movies over the years:

“I had to put down my gun in order to treat this casualty, but there were still bullets flying around—buzzing around our heads like bees, quite literally. So that was hard for me to do, but (Kelly) reassured me that he had me covered. Kelly stood over the top of me and the casualty pretty much the whole time on the way back out of Sadr City, and it was under intense fire.”

Click image above to order book.

Click image above to order book.

Of course, there’s much more inside the pages of Three Days In August. After reading this article and seeing who has endorsed the book, I hope you’ll order a copy.

WORTH NOTING: Due to the politically-correct environment that permeates Hollywood these days, I do not expect the story told in this book to appear on the silver screen anytime soon.

UPDATE 2/25/2015 at 1:24 p.m. Central:  A friend sent me a link to an article published under the headline, The Making of a Real American Sniper. It helps explain what Kelly Stewart told me as highlighted in the blue portion of this article’s lead paragraph. Hope you’ll read and share.

UPDATE 4/19/2015 at 1:12 p.m. Central: Check out the limited-time free-books offer here.

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