Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Should Have Been A Murderer?

Suppose you joined the Army 8 years ago. You signed up for an 8-year term, so now you think you're almost done. But just as you're about to leave and resume your civilian life, the Army tells you that your term has been extended for 27 more years. Don't you just hate it when that happens? Well, this did happen to Emiliano Santiago, a soldier in the Oregon Army National Guard. Oregonlive reports:

Santiago, 27, lives in Pasco, Wash., but is a solider with D Company of the Oregon Guard's 113th Aviation Battalion, based in Pendleton. He signed up for an eight-year tour beginning June 28, 1996. In April, less than three months before he was scheduled to be discharged, the Army alerted Santiago's unit that it might be mobilized.

As a result, Santiago's termination date was extended more than 27 years -- to December 2031.

By comparison, if instead of voluntarily enlisting in the Army, Santiago had been convicted of murder in Oregon, with no prior convictions he would have gotten a sentence of only about 10 years, according to the sentencing guidelines. He'd only have 2 years left on his sentence now, so he would be a free man 25 years sooner.


moe said...

and it wasn't a typo?

Was there a follow up on this? I find myself inexplicably drawn to Emiliano's plight, what with my recent government hating stint.

Tom said...

It doesn't seem to have been a typo. He lost an initial court case where he challenged the Army's decision, and now he is appealing to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. That's the latest news I've been able to find.