Bergdahl awaits sentencing next week
by Leigh Jones
Posted 10/17/17, 11:14 am
Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl pleaded guilty Monday to desertion and misbehavior before the enemy. The judge accepted the plea and scheduled his sentencing hearing for next week. Bergdahl could face up to life in prison, although his defense team hopes the judge will take into consideration all Bergdahl suffered at the hands of the Taliban during five years in captivity. One military expert who interviewed Bergdahl about his experience said he suffered the worst mistreatment of any U.S. service member since the Vietnam War. On Monday, Bergdahl said he walked away from the U.S. outpost in Afghanistan in 2009 because he wanted to talk to a commander at another base about problems with his superiors. Taliban fighters quickly captured him. Several members of the teams who searched for Bergdahl suffered debilitating injuries, a consequence for which critics say Bergdahl should pay. During Monday’s hearing, Bergdahl said he never intended to put his fellow soldiers in harm’s way and didn’t believe the Army would mount rescue missions on his behalf. President Barack Obama exchanged five top-level Taliban fighters for Bergdahl in 2014.
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Leigh is acting managing editor for WORLD Radio. She is a World Journalism Institute graduate who spent six years as a newspaper reporter in Texas before joining WORLD. Leigh also co-wrote Infinite Monster: Courage, Hope, and Resurrection in the Face of One of America's Largest Hurricanes. She resides with her husband and daughter in Houston, Texas.