About 25 Iwakuni Marines punished for violating liberty policy
November 10, 2004
Iwakuni Marine Corps Air Station officials hit at least 25 Marines from Headquarters and Headquarters Squadron in the pocketbook at a recent public nonjudicial punishment session after finding the Marines violated the base’s liberty policy.
The Marines, ranging from private first class to lance corporal, violated Article 92 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice the weekend of Oct. 29 by drinking while underage, not having a liberty buddy or being off base during restricted hours, said Master Sgt. Lesli Coakley, a base spokeswoman, late Monday afternoon.
The public NJP session took place Nov. 3 at Building 1, the base headquarters. The more than 25 Marines waived their right to a court-martial and accepted NJP, she added, saying the exact number wasn’t available.
Punishment includes 60 days’ restriction, reduction in grade and forfeiture of half a month’s pay for two months, but suspended for one month, a base news report stated.
None of the Marines was charged with incidents involving Japanese locals. The infractions were limited to underage drinking and liberty violations, Coakley said.
“This public hearing was not used to embarrass the Marines but to show that the squadron is not doing the things they are supposed to be doing,” Maj. James Lukehart, H&HS executive officer and acting commanding officer, said after the session, according to the report. “We know there are ways around the rules and policies, but we are trusting you to conduct yourselves like Marines. The rules apply to everyone.”
The Marines apologized for “any embarrassment brought to the command, their staff noncommissioned officers and their fellow Marines,” the report added.
After Lukehart spoke, Sgt. Maj. Roland J. Daniel of H&HS excused the Marines, except for the noncommissioned officers of H&HS. According to the report, he asked the young H&HS leaders, “When was the last time you checked on your Marines?”
“The majority of the Marines receiving NJP have not been here longer than three months. That tells me we are not taking care of our own,” stated Daniel in the report. “Some of the NCOs don’t even know where their own roommates are, let alone their Marines.”
He then warned the Marines.
“We are all very tired of it and we are not going to be baby-sitting anymore. The command will throw the book at you,” he said in the report. Daniel also told the NCOs to “be smart when you leave the gate and take care of your Marines,” the report stated. “It’s not hard. But instead, we have too many selfish Marines here and that has to change.”