Bowe Bergdahl’s Article 32 hearing resumes today in Texas.
Day two of the hearing at Joint Base San Antonio – Fort Sam Houston will give the defense team a chance to call witnesses and focus on Bergdahl’s mental health before and after he went missing.
If convicted on the charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy, Bergdahl could face life in prison.
Military prosecutor Maj. Margaret Kurz said in court yesterday that Bergdahl had actually been “planning for weeks to abandon the post and had emailed friends and family about his plans beforehand.”
He snuck off the post “under the cover of darkness,” Kurz told the courtroom. Bergdahl had reportedly expressed opposition to the war in general and doubts about his own role in it.
The Army soldier was held captive by a Taliban-aligned group in Afghanistan from June 2009 until his release in May 2014.
The commanders of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s platoon, company and battalion testified Thursday that his disappearance from his post in Afghanistan six years ago “put a strain on their forces and put his fellow soldiers in danger.”
The Article 32 hearing will result in a report that will be forwarded to the commanding general of U.S. Army Forces Command, according to the NY Daily News. Gen. Robert Abrams will decide whether the case should be referred to a court-martial or is resolved in another manner.
Yesterday’s testimony focused on the meticulous 45-day search and rescue mission during the summer of 2009, after Bergdahl went missing.
It was revealed in court yesterday also that Bergdahl was discharged from the US Coast Guard after a mental health evaluation. The Army apparently waived a requirement for him to have an evaluation before he enlisted and later deployed, military officials said.
No word yet if Bergdahl himself will take the stand today.