Lt. Col. Stuart Scheller posted on social media that he had been “relieved for cause.” His crime was to post a clip calling for accountability after the abysmal withdrawal from Afghanistan. He was ordered to stop posting and was thrown in prison. He is in solitary, can’t even have a book, and awaits trial. He could be in prison for a year for criticizing the withdrawal.
Scheller, who has served in the Marines for 17 years, earlier offered to resign on Sept. 11 in what his parents described to the DCNF as a “symbolic” resignation letter.
Scheller’s parents Stu Sr. and Cathy Scheller explained that they were told by the Marine Corps “that he served at the pleasure of the president” and that they weren’t required to accept his resignation.
“But they didn’t accept that,” Scheller Sr. said. “They gave him an offer that was less than honorable discharge with no pension and no benefits. It was verbal and he did not accept that.”
Scheller’s family was told that there would be an Initial Review Officer’s (IRO) hearing Thursday or next week but said that his attorney has yet to be given a time or date for that hearing.
“We have not spoken to him [Stuart] since he was incarcerated, so we honestly, except what his attorney tells us, we don’t know,” Scheller Sr. said.
Brian Ferguson is the lead attorney working pro bono on Scheller’s case.
He added: “Stuart’s lawyer has lowered our expectations that they could keep him in jail for 6, 9, 12 months prior to an official Court Martial trial.”
“Charges have not even been filed yet by the Marine Corps. We don’t even know why he’s in jail other than breaking a gag order, so it’s kind of hard to mount a defense if we don’t know what he’s being charged with,” Scheller Sr. explained.
We know he broke chain of command but they are going for the most extreme punishment.