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The Times - How a text message can wreck your Army career

Hypothetically, what if Captain McLeod was an unpopular idiot who everybody hated, who was nevertheless innocent of the alleged crime? Should he still -potentially- be beholden to as few as two people saying they have seen some text messages that cannot otherwise be proved to exist? Wouldn't that be the burden of proof required under balance of probability?

What if it was Captain McLeod against one officer cadet? Would Captain Mcleod's view then be accepted as the truth, because of his more senior rank?


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No, no and thrice no. Balance of probability is not on how many nor what rank.


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I can think of a number of regular/TA personnel that have been in trouble whilst posted to/working with an OTC. The most they got was a prompt posting elswhere. Just how serious is a letter of censure? Should he have just taken it on the cheek? Frankly, and although I'm sure we all would, even him being Facebook friends with OTC cadets is a mistake. I'm sure there must be guidance to that end.

I'm sure a number of people will have actively persued postings to OTC's for the opportunity to bang some students.
 

Dettingen

Old-Salt
I'm a bit lost about all the hype here:
He's the Adjutant for christ's sake. The short words in large letters mentioned before is the be all and end all. You just don't put yourself in compromising position be it on FB or literally.
It doesn't matter that this in an OTC; he's a commissioned officer.
The suspension bit ( without prejudice and still being paid) is pretty normal in any line of work where it's not tenable it stay in the post while the case is progressing.
A letter of censure is about par for course.
Balance of probability is pretty standard for employment law type cases in the UK (we didn't just pull AGAI 67 out of our arrse believe it or not).
His brother is his assisting officer, not a defending officer at a court martial. His primary job is to ensure that said capt understands the system and his rights nothing more.

Yes he may miss out converting commission or promoting in the short term and given that he 's probably otherwise a decent bloke and good operator that's a shame. Then again there are plenty of capts out there after the few slots to convert or promote who haven't breached the service test.
 
No, no and thrice no. Balance of probability is not on how many nor what rank.


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Fair enough, you're right. In your experience, how is the system meant to work, and how does it work in reality? Are the two different? They have on the few occasions where I have been involved with these sorts of issues. I suspect the official policy requires a quasi-judicial judgement about what the truth is; I suspect that when applied by non-legally trained commanders, it may be applied in a more blunt fashion.


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It doesn't matter that this in an OTC; he's a commissioned officer.
.

I agree with what you say, but do you have any thoughts on the inconsistency in application of the rules between him and TA 2Lts in OTCs? I was a platoon commander in OTC, albeit years ago, and it was, and I expect still is, absolutely normal for JUO and commissioned platoon commanders to diddle. One rule for all officers? Or are the rules are inconsistently applied?


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msr

LE
Possibly, but I tempered these days by the knowledge that they might be called upon to justify their actions in an employment tribunal?

Trouble is, without the actual text messages as evidence, all you have is hearsay. Plus a senior officer who may have made the wrong call and subsequently felt unable to change his mind...
 

Dettingen

Old-Salt
MPP.

JUO is an appointment not a rank; I think unless their behaviour was openly incorrect then AGAI 67 would struggle to apply here.

The 2Lts are in the same position as the adjt. The commission applies. There would need to be an element of discretion as to application. Not every relationship in a unit is verboten. Assuming they are Pl Comds I would suggest that a relationship inside their Pl is a breach of the service test but who much wider you throw the net is debatable. Having been in a similar position, ahem, I would advise that the CO makes the line clear and public, OTCs being the hive of activity they are.
 
Trouble is, without the actual text messages as evidence, all you have is hearsay. Plus a senior officer who may have made the wrong call and subsequently felt unable to change his mind...

therefore a tribunal will find him innocent and he will get recompense. A bit like civvies when their employers get it wrong. Or am I getting it wrong :)
 

Dettingen

Old-Salt
MSR

Sorry to disagree with you but knowing the GOC involved and the fact that the case also went via a 1* I struggle to see him being pressed into a corner.
 

Exmarine

War Hero
I think we all know you are guilty until proven guilty...as for the comments by LH...oh so true but I do hope things have changed a bit since then...that buffoon in charge of 5 Infantry Bde down south does suggest that buffoons did quite well in the promotion stakes even up until 82.
 
No. Whilst within the military system due to his position as Adj it's wrong, but otherwise it isn't. Both are consenting adults, which often school students are not!

A minor difference in circumstances- both are in positions of trust and behaving inappropriately towards their trustees. The fact they were consenting (and capable of consent) in this case is a small point.
 
"on the balance of probabilities" does not mean that there is no evidential burden, only that, the evidence having been considered, it is more likely than not that the allegations are true.

Given that drink driving was a common occurrence until a few years ago, I'd suggest that at least 50% of people who secured a driving license prior to 1995 has driven drunk.

Therefore, anyone who passed their driving test before 1995 is guilty, on the balance of probability, of drink driving. Jail them all.
 

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