US Marijuana Party

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Airman gets six months, discharge for desertion, marijuana possession

By Franklin Fisher, Stars and Stripes
Pacific edition

OSAN AIR BASE, South Korea — A 22-year-old airman was sentenced Thursday to discharge from the Air Force after pleading guilty to desertion and marijuana charges.

Airman 1st Class Joaquin D. McDowell also was sentenced to six months in prison and reduction to the military’s lowest pay grade, E-1.

McDowell went on leave June 28 and failed to return as scheduled on July 21. His unit declared him absent without leave the next day and on Aug. 16 declared him a deserter.

Then on Sept. 30, while McDowell was driving in Alabama, state police pulled him over and found marijuana and an unlicensed handgun. He was jailed for 23 days then turned over to the Air Force, where he was charged with desertion and with possession and use of marijuana.


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