Infantry staff sergeant reduced to E-1, sent to prison for 4.5 years

Private Celso Rivas (former Staff Sergeant) Photo credit: Facebook

WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii — The following Soldier received courts-martial through the Staff Judge Advocate, 25th Infantry Division.

On June 4, 2018, at a general court-martial convened at Wheeler Army Airfield, Hawaii, Staff Sgt. Celso R. Rivas, U.S. Army, was convicted* by a military judge, pursuant to his pleas, of one specification of false official statement, one specification of sexual assault of a child, and one specification of sexual abuse of a child in violation of Articles 107 and 120b, UCMJ.

The military judge sentenced the accused to be reduced to the grade of (E-1), to be confined for 54 months, and to be discharged from the service with a dishonorable discharge.

According to his Facebook page, he served as an infantry mortarman and is from Leavenworth, Kansas -ironically home to the military’s only maximum-security prison. While it is not known where he will serve his sentence, it will not be at “Leavenworth” because it only houses males with sentences longer than ten years.

A pretrial agreement had no effect on the sentence, according to the Office of the Staff Judge Advocate.

* Federal Convictions. In addition to forfeiture of pay (either adjudged or by operation of law), confinement and a punitive discharge, a Soldier will also have a federal conviction that the Soldier must report when filling out a job application. A federal conviction strips a Soldier of many rights, such as the right to purchase and maintain firearms and voting.

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