Navy JAG Corps Under Investigation, Lt Portier Charges Dismissed
On Thursday, Admiral John Richardson, Chief of Naval Operations, dismissed all charges of covering up war crimes against Lt Jacob Portier, and ordered an investigation into the actions of the Navy JAG Corps. He also withheld any action against Petty Officer 1st Class Corey Scott, the SEAL who confessed to covering the ISIS fighter’s breathing tube during the trial. And the JAG Corps is now under review by top brass.
The Navy stated that the dropped charges were NOT directed by President Trump, but came direct from Admiral Richardson, according to the LA Times.
“Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson today dismissed all charges in the case of Lt. Jacob Portier. He also withheld authority to take any action in the case of Petty Officer 1st Class Corey Scott… Additionally, as part of an ongoing assessment of Judge Advocate General’s (JAG) Corps performance, Richardson directed Vice Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Bob Burke to conduct a Comprehensive Review into the leadership and performance of the JAG Corps. This review is intended to ensure the JAG Corps provides exemplary support to the Navy and the nation.” US Navy statementNavy Times
Lt Jacob Portier was accused of covering up Gallagher’s actions by failing to report him. The first charges were covering up “war crimes” but the judge ruled that the situations were not prohibited acts under the UCMJ. The charges against Lt Portier were: dereliction of duty, destruction of evidence, and conducting Gallagher’s reenlistment ceremony next to the body of the dead ISIS fighter.
Navy JAG Corps – the Judge Advocate General Corps
LA Times reported:
“Recent events indicate a need to review the leadership and performance of the (JAG) Corps,” Richardson said in a memo.
Richardson said the review should address training and professional development, with an “evaluation of the JAG Corps officer career progression and community values for promotion selection and detailing,” according to the memo.
Richardson has also stripped the authority to prosecute Petty Officer 1st Class Corey Scott away from Region Legal Service Office Southwest, which previously prosecuted Gallagher and was set to prosecute Portier.
This situation has been hanging over the Lt’s head for months. He was due in Court today for motions, and his trial was set for September. Petty Officer Scott was to be scrutinized for perjury from his testimony.
It seemed at times like a vendetta of the prosecutors, out to punish combat veterans for being in combat, where things do not always add up to ‘normal’ operations.
“Lt. Portier was a model of courage on the battlefield in the defeat of ISIS and conducted himself with the same steadfast determination in defending the reputation of his platoon back home.” Petty Officer 1st Class Corey Scott
Featured photo: CNO Admiral John Richardson, via Wikimedia commons