Soldier gets prison, discharge for fight at Camp Humphreys bar
March 3, 2006
PYEONGTAEK, South Korea — A soldier found guilty of assaulting fellow soldiers and of disobeying superiors was sentenced Wednesday night by a military jury to one year in prison and a bad conduct discharge.
Pfc. Kellyene A. John also was sentenced to reduction to the military’s lowest pay grade, E-1, and total forfeiture of pay and allowances.
Earlier Wednesday, the seven-member jury found John guilty of an array of charges. Of four counts of assault, she was found guilty of three. Her court-martial began Monday at Camp Humphreys before Army Col. Patrick J. Parrish, 6th Judicial Circuit chief judge.
The Army said most of the charges stemmed from violent incidents pitting John and her soldier boyfriend against fellow soldiers and, on one occasion, Air Force security police. John is assigned to Detachment B, 516th Personnel Services Battalion.
A separate but related court-martial of the boyfriend, Pfc. George Williams Jr. of the 520th Maintenance Company, was to begin Thursday, the Army said.
The jury Wednesday also found John guilty of drunk and disorderly conduct (two counts); resisting apprehension, disobeying an officer, disrespecting a noncommissioned officer and disobeying a noncommissioned officer. John had pleaded innocent to those charges. The jury also convicted her of falsifying an official statement, a charge to which she had pleaded guilty on Monday.
Three of the assault counts and one of the drunk-and-disorderly counts grew from Sept. 7 events at Camp Humphreys. According to the prosecution, the violence began when John’s boyfriend took offense at another soldier who made no response when John asked for a cigarette. The boyfriend confronted the soldier, setting in motion a series of violent incidents, according to the prosecution.
John struck Spc. Jason Barrington on the back of his head with her fist, then struck him on the head or shoulder with a beer bottle. She struck Pvt. John Rackowski in the face with her fist.
But the jury found her innocent of punching Pvt. William L. Potts on the same day.
The charges involving misconduct toward a noncommissioned officer and resisting apprehension arose from a Sept. 5 incident in which Air Force security police assigned to Osan Air Base were summoned to the nearby Asia Hotel on a noise complaint from hotel staff. The officers were sent to a hotel room in which John was an occupant. Camp Humphreys and Osan Air Base are both in Pyeongtaek.
During a noisy confrontation with the officers, John, the jury found, was disrespectful to Air Force Tech. Sgt. George F. Roach by yelling and bumping him with her head. Roach is assigned to Osan’s 51st Security Forces Squadron. She disobeyed his lawful order to back up and cease screaming, the Army said.
The Asia Hotel incident also led to one of the drunk-and-disorderly counts and to the resisting-apprehension charge, the Army said.
The jury also found that in early October John violated her commanding officer’s written order that she not have contact with her boyfriend, Williams.
Capt. Robert J. Shadowens testified Monday that he issued the no-contact order after concluding that John had become involved in misconduct while in the company of her boyfriend.