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Tuesday, June 25, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

Civilian Says Army Arrested & Jailed Him

RALEIGH, N.C. (CN) - The Army arrested and jailed an honorably discharged wounded combat veteran though it no longer has jurisdiction over him, the man claims in court.

Jesse E. Barley sued Secretary of the Army John McHugh and Army Commanding General Lt. Gen. William Garrett, in Federal Court.

Barley claims he was honorably discharged from the Army on Nov. 30, 2012, "because of his medical disability for combat related injuries."

Since then he's lived and worked in York County, Pa. with his wife and four minor children, Barley says in the complaint.

But on March 19, 2013 the defendants ordered him in writing to appear at an administrative hearing at Fort Bragg, "to determine if plaintiff should be involuntary separated from active duty with the U.S. Army for alleged misconduct."

Barley replied through counsel three days later that he was "no longer subject to the personal jurisdiction of the U.S. Army and further provided defendants' representative Notice of Intent to Seek a Temporary Restraining Order, and Preliminary and Permanent Injunctive Relief pursuant to FRCP 65 and that plaintiff would seek a declaratory judgment to the effect that plaintiff was no longer subject to the personal jurisdiction of the U.S. Army, should defendants fail to rescind defendants' actions to cause the return [of] plaintiff to a purported active duty status with the U.S. Army at Fort Bragg, N.C.," according to the complaint.

But the Army had Pennsylvania State Police arrest Barley on April 13. He was taken to the York County Detention Center, where he continues to be held pending his transport to Ft. Bragg, he says in the complaint.

"I have been doing this for 40 years and in all that time, I've never seen a case like this," Barley's attorney Mark Waple told Courthouse News.

"The Army, of course, has a right to recall those to service who have been retired for time served or for a medical reason, but my client wasn't retired, he was discharged, and that's a wholly different matter," Waple said. "You can't be recalled if you've been discharged."

Waple said he could not disclose the nature of his client's alleged misconduct, which he says the Army "has only referred to generally."

He said Barley pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor, which the Army wants to submit to the scrutiny of an administrative hearing.

"The case is getting a lot of scrutiny, particularly from the Army Trial Defense Service, and we intend to file a memorandum from them on this case on Tuesday (today)," Waple said.

The Army Trial Defense Service is an independent agency with the Army Judge Advocate General's Corps, which is mandated to defend soldiers in criminal or administrative actions.

A hearing on Barley's lawsuit is scheduled for April 29.

Barley and his attorney say in the complaint: "Defendants' actions which have caused, and continue to cause, the arrest and detention of plaintiff are without legal authority, and such actions constitute an unlawful arrest and detention by defendants of plaintiff."

Barley seeks a temporary restraining order against his continued and future arrest, apprehension and confinement, a preliminary and permanent injunction preventing the same, and a declaration that his arrest and confinement are without legal authority or justification.

He is represented by Waple and Associates, of Fayetteville, N.C.

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