Here is a link to an Air Force Times article about Col Murphy’s retirement board which recommended that he be retired in the last grade in which he satisfactorily served . . . First Lieutenant! I have to admit even I didn’t see that coming after Col Murphy was convicted and received no punishment. In light of that outcome I will wager that like my prior post, here, Col or 1stLT Murphy will be utilizing a licensed lawyer again in the near future.

17 Responses to “Colonel [1stLT] Murphy Saga Over–Maybe”

  1. Anonymous says:

    For the group: Which would you choose – 6 months of confinement followed by O-6 retirement, or no confinement and O-2 retirement?

  2. Anonymous says:

    The former of course. Is your suggestion that the defense should have done a deal waiving the issue in exchange for possible jail time and a deal for O-6 retirement? Can you even do such a deal?

  3. Some Army Guy says:

    From the hip, I doubt you could do such a deal. The deal is with the CA, while the approval authority for retirement grade (and for a grade determination board) is, I believe, the Secretary of the AF.

  4. Some Army Guy says:

    BTW — I guess this huge loss in retirement pay means that he can’t pay for all of our state bar fees whenever we have to get a letter of good standing for our boards. It’s his fault we have to do that now.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Was he on the “final pay” retirement plan or “high three”? If he was on the “high three”, he will keep his O-6 retirement pay

  6. RY says:

    There are exceptions to the “high three” relating to courts-martial or administrative demotions within 3 years of retirement. I don’t believe “high three” applies.

  7. veritas says:

    UNBELIEVEABLE! Disbarred and working as a judge advocate for over 20 years! He rates no punishment from a general courts-martial and gets retirement pay?

    I remember a Marine Captain back in the early 90’s who got 7 years from a GCM for not telling that he skipped the bar exam.

    WOW. The higher the rank, the lower the standard of conduct.

  8. clarkson says:

    Exactly. It takes a general officer [in the club] to get a reward instead of a punishment from a general court-martial.

    I wonder how many young enlisted servicemen this guy recommended the maximum punishment for over the years for much smaller offenses.

    It’s still true. “Military justice is to justice as military music is to music.”

  9. Presley O'Bannon says:

    New USAF JAG recruiting commercial:

    “A disbarred attorney practiced law for 20 years and was promoted to Colonel…it’s not science fiction, it’s what the Air Force does every day.”

  10. Phil Cave says:

    I think by statute his retirement check will be based on his last check, as an O-2. Look at 10 U.S. Code 1407.

  11. imfb says:

    I’m not sure that’s a fair comparison. There was a complicating factor here: one of his recent tours had been with the White House. President Bush refused to release any records from his time there. In response, the judge ruled (and was upheld on appeal) that, without the potential mitigating evidence, he could not be punished. Obviously an odd fact pattern.

  12. MJW1 says:

    Too bad he wasn’t a Major General, he could have retired as a Colonel.

  13. topgun says:

    It is a classic illustration of the moral bankruptcy, and unconstitutionality of the “conduct unbecoming an officer” offense.

    What is it really? Totally arbitrary and capricious. Who you are is the basis for the charge—not what you did.

    You would think that in the 21st Century we would have moved past 16th century concepts of military law.

  14. axel says:

    DO AS I SAY NOT AS I DO. Leadership at the highest level.

  15. Behsam31 says:

    This guy should have been summarily dismissed with no pay and allowance period,lord, Its simply stupid to enlist!!!!!!!.

    Man does’nt rate any retirement, but I am not sure any board can superseed a courtmartial sentence. The government continues to have it both ways. This Guy will sue and rightfully so and he will win. Courtmartial said no punishment and thats exactly what it means. Col Murphy is corrupt but the system continues to show why men such as he is corrupt. The Gov now tries to rob him of his retirement though their cowboy court said his conduct warrants no punishment.

    I continue to believe their is no such thing as military justice simply punish the weak and uneducated peons expeditiously for being stupid enough to enlist no matter their noble intentions to serve their country.

    The leaders warrant no punishment as they are above reproach and when they can be admonished its done with a pat.

    OK, thats a RANT,

    But seriously , should’nt the government conducting a few dubay hearings about the cases this dude was involved in?

  16. Anonymous says:

    The difference between criminal and administrative punishments will lead to COL Murphy getting LT retirement pay.

    Interesting debate, but the criminal court’s “NO PUNISHMENT” does not mean administrative punishment is off the table. IF the Court’s “no punishment” finding did apply administratively, then SJA offices could no longer push for admin discharges after trial when the accused was convicted but wasn’t discharged by the judge/panel. Many could live with that result.

    As it appears to stand, LT Murphy is going to need to keep working during retirement … if he’s anything like I was he’ll be a LT sleeping on an air mattress. Unfortunate, as it sounds like he was a pretty solid (unlicensed) JAG.

  17. axel says:

    Time for a big dose of civilian world reality.

    Lt. Murphy’s retirement, and benefits, and retired ID card, will set him up just fine. He won’t be applying for food stamps any time soon.

    Plus, what about all those accumulated years of collecting a paycheck for being something that he was not? Will the government go after that money obtained by fraud? No.

    There are plenty of E-1’s, E-2’s, and E-3’s who would gladly trade their BCD for LT. Murphy’s lottery winnings that put him on the beach somewhere in Mexico.

    As someone within the hierarchy of the military justice system, and a former military commander, LT [almost BGEN] Murphy was fully aware of the rule of “different spanks for different ranks” and used it to his advantage.