2nd ID soldier gets 10 months, bad conduct discharge for stealing money, debit cards
October 18, 2007
A 2nd Infantry Division soldier was sentenced Tuesday to 10 months confinement and a bad conduct discharge for stealing money and debit cards.
During a special court martial at Camp Casey, Pvt. James Box, B Battery, 6th Battalion, 37th Field Artillery Regiment, pleaded guilty to seven theft charges and one count each of using marijuana, conspiracy, and falsifying an official statement.
Twice in June, Box and others used a master key to open the lockers at Hansen Field House and steal debit cards, cash and an iPod from wallets stored there in June.
Box told Judge (Col.) Donna Wright that one of his accomplices, Pvt. Charles Presnell, got the key from a field house employee who had loaned it to him to open a locker.
During the first incident, on June 17, Box said he acted as a lookout while Presnell, his former roomate, stole debit cards and cash that were later used to buy such items as a Play Station Portable, cigarettes and an iPod, at the Camp Casey Post Exchange.
The two soldiers returned to the field house five days later and Box stole cash and a debit card to finance a night out clubbing in Tokori, a town outside Camp Hovey.
While he didn’t testify, Box did give an unsworn statement apologizing to the Army, his unit, his victims and his family.
“I didn’t realize how much I benefitted from the Army,” he said. “If I could go back I would change my whole mentality and put myself around better company.”
Prosecutor Capt. Jeremy Steward sought the maximum sentence — 12 months of confinement, forfeiture of two-thirds pay and allowances and a bad conduct discharge, saying Box was a “disruptive force” in his unit.
Defense attorney Capt. David Stem asked for a sentence of time served, saying a federal conviction and a bad conduct discharge would follow him the rest of his life.
Box already had served two months in pre-trial confinement and was credited two days toward his sentence for once being taken to a dining facility in handcuff and shackles.
Pvt. Robert Kinneman, B Battery, 6th Battalion, 37th Field Artillery Regiment, who along with Box acted as a lookout during the first of the two incidents, was convicted on Monday of larceny and conspiracy for his part in the incidents.
Presnell has not been to trial.