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Petty-Minded Discharge?

Petty-Minded Discharge?


U.S. Navy officials are seeking to discharge a 21-year-old sailor who was found sleeping in the same bed as a fellow service member.

TheWashington Postreports that Petty Officer Stephen C. Jones was charged with "willful failure to exhibit professional conduct" at the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command, near Charleston, S.C. when he was found in his room with another man who had stopped by to watch The Vampire Diaries. Jones denies any inappropriate conduct.

"The subterfuge is, they believe this kid is a homosexual, but they have no proof of it," said Gary Myers, Jones's civilian attorney. "So what they've done here is to trump this thing up as a crime. This is not a crime."

Navy officials declined to comment on the case, citing privacy issues, the Post reported. But advocates cautioned that commanders opposed to repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" could attempt action against LGBT service members by other means.

"It's been the case for years that commanders had at their disposal the means to chapter someone out of the military for something other than homosexual conduct," said Servicemembers United executive director Alex Nicholson. "If you want to get rid of somebody, you can always find something to punish them for."

Read the full story here.

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