Army colonel at Fort Hood to face court-martial on charges of abusive sexual contact
Stars and Stripes April 27, 2023
Col. Jon Meredith, who was fired last year from command of a brigade, will face a court-martial for charges of abusive sexual contact, 1st Cavalry Division officials said Wednesday.
The Army referred the charges Friday to the military justice system, said Lt. Col. Jennifer Bocanegra, spokeswoman for the division, which is based at Fort Hood, Texas. An arraignment hearing has not been scheduled.
Meredith, 47, faces two counts of abusive sexual contact and two counts of conduct unbecoming of an officer, Bocanegra said.
Abusive sexual contact is considered touching another person directly or through clothing with an intent to abuse, humiliate or degrade any person, or with an intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire, according to the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Meredith commanded the division’s 1st Brigade Combat Team from May 2021 until Oct. 3, 2022, when he was removed from the job. The initial reason given by the Army for his firing was a “loss of confidence” in his judgment and ability to lead troops. He declined to comment Thursday.
The division confirmed the colonel’s criminal investigation in March, when Meredith’s wife Col. Ann Meredith was fired from her job as commander of the 89th Military Police Brigade, also at Fort Hood.
In a post to her personal Facebook page, Ann Meredith said she was fired because she sent a text message that was considered interfering in the investigation into her husband.
“It was an accident, and I immediately reported myself and took responsibility,” she said in the social media post. “I simply made a mistake while defending my family.”
Ann Meredith will not face criminal charges or a court-martial and was disciplined through administrative action, officials said in March. She has declined to comment.
Jon Meredith was the second consecutive commander to be removed from the 1st Brigade. His predecessor, Col. Michael Schoenfeldt, was removed for bullying staff. The brigade was deployed to Poland at the time.
The married colonels have served more than 20 years in the Army with leadership positions at Fort Riley, Kan., and Fort Knox, Ky., as well as overseas assignments.