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The soldier who allegedly took an APC joy ride through Virginia is now accused of violating his bond
Whatever happened to that guy who allegedly stole an APC and went on an epic joy ride through Virginia, with police chasing him as he apparently live-tweeted the incident?
That's a very good question! And I have an update for you, which includes more weird/hilarious tweets and new accusations that he violated the terms of his bond and traveled to Iraq.
The Richmond-Times Dispatch reports:
Joshua Phillip Yabut, 30, of Virginia Beach, was out on bond awaiting trial in both Richmond and Nottoway on charges associated with the 65-mile police pursuit when he apparently traveled to Iraq earlier this year, according to a report prepared by the Virginia Fusion Center, a partnership between Virginia State Police and the state Department of Emergency Management aimed at terrorism and criminal activity.
"He had no coherent reason for the travel," said the report, which is among court documents in Nottoway Circuit Court. In another report, Yabut "reported traveling to Iraq to engage in photography."
Let's back up for a moment. To refresh your memory, in June 2018, Yabut, a first lieutenant with the Virginia National Guard, was arrested by Virginia State Police, who said they chased him for 65 miles while he was behind the wheel of an M577 Armored Personnel Carrier, which he drove from Fort Pickett to near Richmond City Hall.
Before all of this, Yabut was tweeting some clues to his plan, and then later, a selfie to commemorate his legendary status (note: This Twitter account is unconfirmed, but it certainly looks to be Yabut's, given that he tweeted his full name, rank, DoD ID#, and other personal information in the weeks prior).
He was later arrested and charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. Besides appearing in court, he was also involuntarily committed to Virginia's Central State Hospital.
After Yabut was released on bond, he went back to tweeting his random musings, talked of things he was coding, shared photos of wood-working projects, and dropped his private medical records, which asserted that he was not under the influence of drugs during the APC incident (this charge was later dropped).
He also shared records purportedly showing a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder, insomnia, bipolar disorder, and an unspecified anxiety disorder. And according to court records, on Jan. 22 Yabut boarded a military flight from Naval Air Station Norfolk — with plenty of stops in between — that eventually led him to Erbil, Iraq. He returned two days later, according to The Richmond-Times Dispatch.
Meanwhile, over on his Twitter account, Yabut posted on Jan. 29 that he "liberated Kurdistan" along with photos taken at Erbil International Airport.
The Virginia Fusion Center, which prepared the report about Yabut's bond violation, also mentioned in court documents that he was researching bomb-making and "displays information on two issues" of al Qaeda magazines, but if you look at the breadth of his Twitter feed, it's pretty random. I mean, seriously, the guy sometimes retweets the official U.S. Army account, then pivots to a quiz from 538, before saying shit like "3am scared walking home alone extended asmr video" or "can't believe tom clancy is dead."
For what it's worth, Yabut also changed his name on Twitter from Joshua [BCH] to "Boiling" in Persian, which could be perhaps the least bizarre thing in this case. But hey, that's just me.
Task & Purpose reached out to the Virginia National Guard for comment, but we have not yet received a response. However, a Guard spokesman told the Times-Dispatch that Yabut's superiors took his military identification card; his lawyer said his passport was given to a judge.
Yabut is currently being held in the Richmond City Justice Center, where he was booked on Feb. 6.
The Air Force's top general says one of the designers of the ride-sharing app Uber is helping the branch build a new data-sharing network that the Air Force hopes will help service branches work together to detect and destroy targets.
The network, which the Air Force is calling the advanced battle management system (ABMS), would function a bit like the artificial intelligence construct Cortana from Halo, who identifies enemy ships and the nearest assets to destroy them at machine speed, so all the fleshy humans need to do is give a nod of approval before resuming their pipe-smoking.
An F-15 is rocking a WWII paint job to honor a B-17 pilot who gave his life to save a wounded crewman
An F-15C Eagle is sporting a badass World War II-era paint job in honor of a fallen bomber pilot who gave everything to ensure his men survived a deadly battle.
A U.S. E-11A Battlefield Airborne Communications Node aircraft crashed on Monday on Afghanistan, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein has confirmed.
Beloved basketball legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and seven other people were killed in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California on Sunday. Two days earlier, Army Spc. Antonio I. Moore was killed during a vehicle rollover accident while conducting route clearing operations in Syria.
Which one more deserves your grief and mourning? According to Maj. Gen. John R. Evans, commander of the U.S. Army Cadet Command, you only have enough energy for one.
After 70 years, service members are finally filing medical malpractice claims against the US military
Jessica Purcell, a captain in the U.S. Army Reserve, was pregnant with her first child when she noticed a swollen lymph node in her left underarm.
Health-care providers at a MacDill Air Force Base clinic told her it was likely an infection or something related to pregnancy hormones. The following year they determined the issue had resolved itself.
It hadn't. A doctor off base found a large mass in her underarm and gave her a shocking diagnosis: stage 2 breast cancer.
Purcell was pregnant again. Her daughter had just turned 1. She was 35. And she had no right to sue for malpractice.
A 1950 Supreme Court ruling known as the Feres doctrine prohibits military members like Purcell from filing a lawsuit against the federal government for any injuries suffered while on active duty. That includes injury in combat, but also rape and medical malpractice, such as missing a cancer diagnosis.
Thanks in part to Tampa lawyer Natalie Khawam, a provision in this year's national defense budget allows those in active duty to file medical malpractice claims against the government for the first time since the Feres case.
With the Department of Defense overseeing the new claims process, the question now is how fairly and timely complaints will be judged. And whether, in the long run, this new move will help growing efforts to overturn the ruling and allow active duty members to sue like everyone else.