Air Force Agrees To 21-Day Notice Of Any Fehrenbach Discharge

Posted by Chris Geidner
August 16, 2010 4:39 PM |

In a joint agreement filed today in U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho, lawyers for Lt. Col. Victor Fehrenbach and the U.S. Air Force agreed that the Air Force will notify Fehrenbach's lawyers on the "same day that the Secretary of the Air Force or his designee has made a decision whether to discharge Plaintiff" Fehrenbach, which cannot be before August 27.

The Air Force lawyers in the Department of Justice then agreed not to "take any steps to execute or process Plaintiff's discharge or separation ... for 21 days following such notification." This agreement will allow the court time to consider Fehrenbach's request that the court put a hold, or injunction, on any discharge.

If the Air Force's decision is to discharge Fehrenbach, then, per the agreement filed today, the Air Force & DOJ will have five days to respond to Fehrenbach's motion for a prelimary injunction to stop his discharge and Fehrenbach's lawyers will then have five days to reply.

At that point, the parties are seeking for the court to hold a hearing on the motion in the next week -- which would fall within the 21-day wait period for action on any discharge decision.

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network executive director Aubrey Sarvis said in a statement, "The agreement recognizes the immediate harm to Lt. Col. Fehrenbach and insures that he will eventually get to make his case at a full blown hearing without losing his job. 

"This agreement is a victory for Lt. Col. Fehrenbach and our nation.  The Air Force can still do the right thing and retain Lt. Col. Fehrenbach under the Pentagon’s own revised regulations on 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell.'  The Senate needs to act next month to get rid of this antiquated law that dishonors some of our finest and most talented service members."

The filing: FehrenbachAgreedStipulation.pdf

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