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Smoke doesn't always mean fire Part III

Coming fresh off the heels of the LOR/UIF from Lt Col Martin, Tyler refocused his efforts on his civilian legal case and his ALS appeal.

His civilian case appeared to be on the verge of completion as Tyler was armed with a statement from his accuser recanting her initial statement. Her second statement cleared Tyler of any wrong doing. Moreover this information was made available to Lt Col Martin.

Great news right? Surely Lt Col Martin would rescind the LOR and UIF because Tyler is innocent! Not quite.

If you remember Lt Col Martin predicated 'getting rid' of the LOR and UIF on two conditions: that the charges off-base are dropped and the ALS appeal is granted. The flaw in this logic is quite obvious to most.

If Tyler did not commit the crime, and the charges are dropped, but for whatever reason ALS doesn't grant his appeal, keeping the LOR/UIF knowing he is innocent would add insult to injury. This of course is assuming that Tyler didn't commit the crime.

When Lt Col Martin learned that all of the charges were very likely to be dropped against Tyler he stated he believed Tyler had threatened the woman so she would change her story to 'get him off.' Lt Col Martin was so unwilling to admit he was wrong, he had to mitigate his cognitive dissonance and create a narrative where Tyler was still a dangerous criminal. All while going against every character statement and testimonial from his leadership. By this point AMU leadership had become more vocal in their support for Tyler, as now he was a much safer bet.

Oddly, Lt Col Martin did rescind the UIF but kept the LOR. His stated reason was so that when Tyler submitted his appeal there would not be an active UIF and the associated personnel code.

So at this point in the story, ask yourself: Does Lt Col Martin believe Tyler is innocent or guilty?

If he believes Tyler is innocent, the LOR should be rescinded

If he believes Tyler is guilty, he should have kept the UIF.

So which is it; innocent or guilty? It's like Schrodinger's punishment, Tyler is both guilty and not guilty simultaneously.

Nevertheless, Tyler continued his ALS appeal and eventually submitted it. I've included a few excerpts from his appeal below so you can read it for yourself:

Tyler submitted his appeal within the allotted time. First it went to MSgt Pilgrim for her to rebut Tyler's points. After a few days it traveled to the Barnes Center at Maxwell-Gunter AFB for review. Unlike my NCO Academy appeal, an ALS appeal is not reviewed by the commander at the Barnes Center. Rather it is reviewed by a representative. Likely a result of so many students in ALS, which results in quite a few more appeal applications.

A few weeks later Tyler received an email response from a MSgt at the Barnes Center. Unfortunately Tyler's appeal was denied. I was dumbfounded. Tyler was upset and confused. While we were both pretty biased, we believed the written appeal was very strong and based on the exact verbiage from the Barnes Center Instruction. The email concluded with the standard phrase 'if you have any questions please let me know'

Tyler replied to the email asking how the decision was reached and what recourse remained. Tyler CC'd me on the email as he did for most of his ALS correspondence. Oddly the MSgt called me and asked why 'This SrA Perkie keeps emailing me'

I explained that Tyler was just trying to understand how the Barnes Center reached the decision they did. The MSgt [sorry his name escapes me] said if Tyler had any questions he should ask his commander.

Now I was confused. Lt Col Martin wasn't at all involved in the ALS appeal, why would I ask him? The MSgt replied that 'we sought SrA Perkie's commander's input when deciding a on the appeal.'

Ah ha, now I understand. My guess is MSgt Pilgrims rebuttal to Tyler's appeal was flaccid, while Tyler's appeal was compelling. The Barnes Center reached out to Holloman to understand what happened. With Lt Col Martin convinced Tyler was not only a violent criminal, but had also threatened his accuser, he likely told the Barnes Center his twisted narrative as fact. The Barnes Center assumed the squadron commander had a handle on the situation and just did his bidding.

So I'd like to return to Lt Col Martin's conditions for rescinding the LOR. If Tyler is found innocent off base, and if his ALS appeal is granted.

A few days later the charges against Tyler were dropped by the Las Cruces District Attorney without prejudice. Meaning they could bring the charges against Tyler again in the future, however as of this writing they never did.

Lt Col Martin refused to remove the LOR.

By February 2016 Lt Col Martin was transitioning to be the Deputy Group Commander for the 54th Fighter Group. For a few months he had to dual hat being the group deputy and the AMXS commander.

Tyler kept his line number however because of the ALS disciplinary release he had to wait a full year to return to ALS before he could sew on SSgt.

While Tyler's career wasn't destroyed, it certainly took a major hit. All because Lt Col Martin refused to accept that he was wrong. At every opportunity Lt Col Martin could have accepted his mistake, and make it right; instead he elected to use every tool at his disposal to hamper and harass SrA Tyler Perkie. To me it became quite clear this had very little to do with the events of that night, and everything to do with a Lt Col Martin and his anger at Tyler for exercising his right to remain silent.

But karma can be a real bitch.. as you will soon see.


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