AWOL officer turns himself in
BAUMHOLDER, Germany — Capt. Robert Przybylski, the missing Baumholder-based officer, ended weeks of uncertainty about his whereabouts on Friday by turning himself over to Army authorities.
“He is safe and in good health. Army officials continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding his absence,” said Lt. Col. Amy Hannah, V Corps spokeswoman.
Przybylski, absent without leave since Oct. 10, turned himself in at the Volgelweh military police station in Kaiserslautern.
Hannah went on to say that it is premature to discuss any action that may or may not be taken against Przybylski, and that such decisions will be made only after the investigation into the captain’s absence is complete.
In the meantime, Przybylski will be restricted to Baumholder barracks and be given a temporary assignment while the case is investigated.
Przybylski was recently assigned to the Baumholder-based 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division as a company commander. But on Oct. 10 he disappeared without explanation.
In the subsequent weeks, Army officials were tight-lipped about their investigation and search for the missing officer. However, officials said foul play did not appear to be a factor.
Soon after his disappearance, investigators placed radio announcements and a TV crawler on AFN in the hopes of persuading the captain to return home. But Przybylski’s absence persisted and the spots were pulled after a few days.
Before being assigned to the 2nd Brigade, Przybylski worked at the division level as a planning and integrations officer. And in 2003 he was a lieutenant serving as an airborne scout platoon leader in Iraq.
When Przybylski turned himself in Friday night he was on the brink of being declared a deserter, a designation that can take effect after 30 consecutive days of unauthorized absence.
Officials said Przybylski was still in AWOL status when he turned himself in.
It is unclear whether the prospect of being classified a deserter was a factor in Przybylski’s return. It also remains unclear what prompted him to depart in the first place.
The case continues to be investigated, Hannah said.