The Army's lead investigator in the Maj. Matthew Golsteyn murder case has pleaded guilty to charges related to wearing medals that he had not been awarded, said Fort Bragg spokesman Lt. Col. Mike Burns.
Army Sgt. 1st Class Mark Delacruz was reduced in rank to specialist after pleading guilty at a special court-martial on Monday to making false official statements and wearing unauthorized insignia, decorations, badges, and ribbons, Burns told Task & Purpose.
Delacruz had been charged for falsely submitting a Purple Heart to his official military file and wearing the decoration along with the Pathfinder Badge and Air Assault Badge, none of which he had been officially awarded, Burns said. The former sergeant first class also certified his official military board file for promotion.
For going on 17 years, Sgt. 1st Class Richard Stayskal has served, fought, and bled for his country; first as a Marine infantryman, when he survived a gunshot wound to the chest during a firefight in Ramadi, Iraq, in 2004; and then as a U.S. Army Green Beret, deploying overseas multiple times.
Now, he's fighting a battle against terminal lung cancer that his military care providers failed to catch, and in the process, Stayskal is taking on a 69-year-old legal rule known as the Feres Doctrine which bars service members and their families from suing the government for negligence or wrongdoing.
On April 30, Stayskal was one of three victims of military medical malpractice to testify before Congress on the Supreme Court precedent that bars them from having their day in court.
Maj. Matthew Golsteyn in Afghanistan. (Photo courtesy of Philip Stackhouse.)
Former Special Forces Maj. Matthew Golsteyn, who was charged with murder after admitting he killed a suspected Taliban bomb maker, claims he "conducted an ambush" when he engaged the unarmed man.
"Over these years, what the Army – particularly this time, the United States Army Special Operations Command – seems to be intent on doing is characterizing an ambush as murder," Golsteyn told Fox & Friends' Pete Hegseth during a Sunday interview. "What Army special operators and regular Army, like infantry soldiers, have done over the last 15 years, those routine combat actions are now being characterized as murder."
"Plenty of people have been shot, don't be a fucking pussy about this," is not the advice many Americans would give a friend still in intensive care after surviving a gunshot wound. But then again, Green Beret veteran Kevin Flike probably didn't need any of their shitty advice.