Third soldier sentenced in Ansbach drug case
WüRZBURG, Germany — A third Ansbach-area soldier has been sentenced to jail and discharged in connection with an off-base drug party last March, according to the 1st Infantry Division’s staff judge advocate.
Cpl. Timothy Vernon, 25, a military policeman assigned to the 235th Base Support Battalion, pleaded guilty to charges of possessing, using and distributing marijuana, psilocybin mushrooms and the party drug Ecstasy, said Staff Sgt. Connie Fassler, a court reporter.
Vernon invited two friends, Pfc. Kirby Smith and Spc. Tyler Swafford, to his house in Ansbach the evening of March 6 to play video games and drink beer, according to a court document. A female friend of Swafford’s later allegedly brought over the mushrooms and Ecstasy — a drug combination called a “hippie flip” — and marijuana. The three soldiers then ingested the drugs but were later turned in by a fourth soldier who was present but didn’t join in the party.
Vernon told the court he had been under stress because of marital problems and a traumatic recent deployment to Afghanistan, Fassler said.
Judge (Col.) James Pohl sentenced Vernon to four months in jail and ordered him reduced to the lowest enlisted rank.
Smith and Swafford, both court-martialed earlier, each received 12-month sentences, demotions to E-1, and bad-conduct discharges.