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April 2022
Tim Bilecki

Bilecki Ensures GOMOR for Baseless Sex Assault Claim Withdrawn and Destroyed

Sexual Assault
Fort Bliss, Texas
Fort Bliss, Texas
GOMOR withdrawn and destroyed.

An innocent Soldier by any other name is still innocent. That is unless you let commands in the modern era of Sexual Harassment/Assault Response and Prevention (SHARP) have their way. This is the case of an Army Sergeant who was accused of sexual assault by a fellow service member. Now, even though there was no evidence to support the accusation, the Army attempted to issue this innocent Soldier a General Officer Memorandum of Reprimand (GOMOR) based solely on the accusation and, knowing full well that there was no evidence that would lead to a preferred charge. An innocent man, labeled as a perpetrator of sexual assault in his permanent record, just because. Not on our watch.

As soon as the Soldier retained court martial Bilecki, we conducted an independent investigation and drafted a rebuttal so clear that the commanding general promptly tore up the GOMOR and permanently destroyed it. Not only did he destroy it, but the CG called Bilecki and personally thanked him for the work he did to exonerate an innocent Soldier. Meanwhile, the command that issued the GOMOR just hoped the Soldier would be so “thankful” not to be prosecuted that he would take his GOMOR like a good little boy.

While the details of the allegation are not even of substance enough to discuss the details of the case, it highlights the pervasive bias against accused Soldiers in the era of SHARP. Punishment without due process stands only to ruin the careers of good men and women while simultaneously incentivizing false allegations to the point that victims who truly deserve justice may not see it. There is no justice in punishing an innocent man or woman. None.

Much of this injustice is driven by the fact that the Criminal Investigation Command (CID) is simply under too much pressure to find guilt. This is driven by the top brass, Congressional leadership, and press all too eager to run with the next sexual misconduct story. This leads to a culture of confirmation bias, where investigators are more interested in proving that a crime occurred than in finding the truth.

Thankfully for this innocent Soldier, we ran into a CG with enough brass on his shoulder and the moral courage to do what is right. By destroying the GOMOR when he saw the evidence, the CG restored the belief that justice can still be served in the era of SHARP. However, that never would have happened if the Soldier wasn’t willing to fight back. If you are innocent, you must fight back, and you must get experienced counsel into that fight on your behalf.

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