Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Fort Bragg Sgt. Major convicted of fraudulent enlistment after 28 years

Fort Bragg soldier convicted of using his brother's name
Fayetteville Observer
By Paul Woolverton Staff writer
Dec 18, 2013

A soldier accused of using his brother's identity to enlist in the Army 25 years ago was demoted two ranks today after being convicted in a court-martial at Fort Bragg.

Sgt. Maj. William Anthony Morrone Jr. was convicted of fraudulent enlistment and making false official statements. He has served his 25-year Army career under his brother Gerald's name and social security number.

A military judge, Col. Andrew Glass, sentenced him to a demotion of rank to sergeant first class and recommended that the Army assist him in retiring.

After Morrone's conviction, prosecutors argued for a dishonorable discharge, suspension of military benefits and long-term confinement.

Morrone's defense asked for no punishment, saying he gave 28 years to the Army, earned his rank and suffered injuries while deployed overseas.

In a sworn statement, Morrone apologized to his family and said he always wanted to be a part of the military. Morrone said he got his mother to sign paperwork for him to get into the Army at 17.

"Since I was a little kid, I always wanted to be a soldier," he said.

Morrone said after being kicked out of the Army less than three years later, he decided to try to get back in.

"It's the best thing in the world. It really is," Morrone said, choking up. "So I came back in. That's what I did."

Regardless of the conviction, Morrone said he did the work while serving "I put the boots on," he said. "I buried my soldiers."
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