Minn Soldier Guilty of Desertion
A Minnesota soldier was sentenced to three months in military prison Monday for deserting her unit the day before being deployed to Kuwait.
Spc. Melanie McPherson, 28, an Army reservist from Tofte, Minn., originally pleaded guilty to going absent without leave, or AWOL, which is a lesser charge. But the new ruling finding McPherson guilty of desertion supercedes the first.
McPherson hitchhiked back to Minnesota from Fort Bliss in July.
Other than the prison sentence, McPherson was reduced in rank to private and will receive a bad-conduct discharge.
McPherson was trained as a military photojournalist, but said that she was afraid to be deployed and then be assigned a more dangerous job, like truck driving, that she had not been trained for.