USNA Mid sentenced for stealing lab equipment

Discussion in 'Academy/Military News' started by Luigi59, Mar 5, 2010.

  1. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    USNA Mid sentenced for stealing lab equipment

    By Brian Witte - The Associated Press
    Posted : Thursday Mar 4, 2010 18:00:33 EST

    ANNAPOLIS, Md. — A military judge sentenced a U.S. Naval Academy midshipman to one year in the brig on Thursday for stealing about $28,000 worth of electronic lab equipment from the academy and selling it on eBay.

    Midshipman Thomas Hayes, a senior electrical engineering major, pleaded guilty to larceny and loss or destruction of government property.

    At a court-martial on the academy’s grounds, Hayes told a military judge that he was trying to help his mother, who was having financial difficulties that included a home foreclosure. He said his mother regularly made frantic phone calls to him, and he said she was suicidal.

    “I intend to repay it back with every cent I make,” Hayes, of South Glens Falls, N.Y., told Capt. Bruce MacKenzie, the judge.

    Although Hayes highlighted financial stresses on his family, prosecutors said he still managed to own a car and take a trip to Jamaica. Prosecutors also said he could have taken out a loan or sought work.

    MacKenzie sentenced Hayes to three years imprisonment with two years of the sentence suspended. He dismissed Hayes from the Navy and ordered him to forfeit pay. He also ordered Hayes to pay $28,000 in restitution.

    The academy issued a statement saying, “If he has no disciplinary actions while in the brig, he is eligible to be released after 12 months under the plea agreement.”

    According to military prosecutors, Hayes, 26, stole high-end lab equipment that is used in electrical engineering courses. Once he got an offer on eBay, he would enter the classroom by himself and put the equipment in a bag, taking it back to his dorm room to package for shipping in 10 separate thefts between October 2008 and February 2009.

    Although the total value of the equipment stolen was estimated to be $28,000, Hayes sold the equipment at steep discounts, only netting about $14,000. For example, he sold a generator valued about $2,000 for $850.

    “That’s quite a deal, isn’t it?” MacKenzie said to Hayes while underscoring the big price difference.

    Christopher Anderson, an assistant professor of electrical engineering, testified that the loss of the equipment has had an impact on classes because students need the items to work on projects.

    “There’s definitely more sharing,” Anderson said.

    Anderson also said the equipment hasn’t been replaced because of a budget shortfall.

    Gerald Ballman, the lab manager, testified that the items were small and easily transportable.

    The academy has installed cameras inside classrooms in the building at a cost of about $6,000 to prevent future theft, Ballman said.

    Haynes came to the academy after having enlisted as a nuclear submariner.

    The case was investigated by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service.
     
  2. NavIss58

    NavIss58 Member

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    it's comforting to know the Academy maintains it's zero tolerance for stealing.
     
  3. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Wow, USNA is really having some problems.... :confused:
     
  4. KveTina

    KveTina Member

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  5. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Snary comment but not really accurate. This was the result of a criminal investigation by NCIS. Out of Academy hands.

    LITS - I don't really think so - stuff like this happens at other academies, but for some reason USNA gets a lot of publicity.

    What is puzzling about this is - he was a senior. He would have gotten his loan (they call it Cow loan at West Point) and could have used that to help his mother. Unless he blew threw it already.
     
  6. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    Good grief. What a moron.

    What a way to throw your life away.....
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2010
  7. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    This stuff.....popping positive on drug tests, sexual misconduct, larceny.....does not just "happen" at other academies, certainly not sending cadets and midshipmen to the brig.

    Since 1876 the Coast Guard Academy has courtmartialed one cadet....my classmate.

    Have cadets popped positive on drug tests? Sure, but not many, maybe two or three that I could remember in my 4 years at CGA, and ALL were booted.

    Cadets has also been caught stealing, but from other cadets, like iPods, etc, and when they were caught they were given Honor Offenses, and most (probably all, I can't remember) got the boot.

    Larceny, time in the brig? No, those don't happen at other academies regularly, this isn't Annapolis just "in the news".
     
  8. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    I'm (sadly) inclined to agree.

    Although there are some stories (such as the Ether Bunny at West Point) that come close, assuming they are true.

    Closest thing I remember to a criminal case was a guy in my class who decided to steal credit cards while in the mail room. This was in the days before activation codes and the like. He just disappeared one day and was never seen again. NIS (as it was known back then) just took him away.

    Headlines like this don't help the USNA cause.... :thumbdown:
     
  9. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    It does happen. I don't know to what extent - but there are definitely incidents that don't garner the attention that it would at USNA - and certainly don't make this forum.
    Perhaps someone should do a study or even a Congressional Investigation and document frequencies and severities of crimes committed at the service academies.

    Don't forget the CGA is much smaller than the *Big Three*.

    Zaphod - right on. He threw his life away.
     
  10. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    No thanks. The last thing we need is to hand the usual suspects more ammo to use against us. :mad:
     
  11. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    Their were 9 cadets kicked out of USCGA last summer, some for drug use, some for stealing (not from others, but from the Exchange).

    But none of them averaged 7.3 yards per carry, which, despite a positive drug test, will keep you in the USNA.
     
  12. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    Does it ever occur to the dim bulbs in the administration just how BAD things like this make the Academy look? :unhappy:
     
  13. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Very true, I am happy to never forget that, I find comfort in not "getting lost in the numbers"... but I would assume....that in 134 years we have had more people walk through the doors at CGA than USNA has had walk through the door between 2009 and 2010...and yet somehow USNA has had two Courts-Martials while in that 136 years CGA has had one.

    I am disturbed about the general trend at USNA. I'm not the only one. I had a meeting with a number of USNA grads....OLD grads, and they aren't happy either.
     
  14. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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  15. MJOmom

    MJOmom Member

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    stuff does happen at other academies ... and it is sad/bad and all the rest of it ... for anyone to say it's just USNA is begging for a nasty one-upsmanship debate ... or would that be a one-downsmanship ... to the bottom of the barrel ... several instances come to mind ... but let's NOT go there ...

    4000+ midshipmen/cadets attend each SA ... the majority are great people/future officers ...
     
  16. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    :bang: Incorrect.

    The USCGA only has about 970 total cadets.

    And the USMMA only has about 1,100 midshipmen.

    No one disagrees. Far more than the majority, I would wager that 99% never go to a Mast, never go to a Article 15 hearing, and never go before any of the honor boards.

    But that doesn't sell newspapers. So when one of them falls out, it IS news.

    :cool:
     
  17. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Yes and no. The recency and apparent regularity of this happening at USNA recently is disturbing and doesn't happen everywhere. Please, in the last two years find cadets or midshipment who are now sitting in the Brig.

    You won't.

    Also, each academy doesn't have 4,000+.
     
  18. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Luigi your correction would have been phrased better to read:
    While USNA, USMA and USAFA all have 4000+ midshipmen/cadets; USCGA has less than 1000 cadets and USMMA has about 1100 midshipmen.

    LITS - use google. they are out there.
     
  19. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Been there, done that, have the blue tshirts JAM. Yes, it happens, but it's an alarming rate at USNA.
     
  20. Kero

    Kero Member

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    I want to point out that while the numbers might be against USNA, it doesn't help that it is in one of, if not the biggest news center of the country, while all of the others are in the middle of nowhere.
     

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