The deputy commander of the US Pacific Command was deemed to have wasted government resources after conducting “predominantly personal travel” to Fort Rucker, Alabama from his duty station in Hawaii.
According to AL, Lieutenant General Anthony Crutchfield travelled to Alabama-based Maxwell Air Force base and Fort Rucker for speeches and a promotion ceremony, something the Defense Department Inspector General says was a waste of government funds.
Crutchfield has strong ties to the Alabama installations, previously holding the position of commander of the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker from 2010 to 2012 when he left to serve as chief of staff for the U.S. Pacific Command. In 2014, he was named deputy commander of the U.S. Pacific Command (USPACOM).
“We recommend the secretary of the Army consider appropriate corrective action with regard to Lt. Gen. Crutchfield,” the Inspector General’s office said in a June 15, 2015, memo.
Crutchfield denied the IG’s claims, saying that the conclusion was “false, not supported by evidence, and uses statements of what the anonymous complainant ‘thinks’ was actually the purpose” of his trip. Stating that his reputation spoke “volumes on this matter”, he claims that he did everything in a legal and official capacity.
USPACOM spokesman LTC Derrick Cheng says that Crutchfield sought “significant” legal advice before making the trip.
According to the IG office, the 11-day “duty” trip cost over $3,821, not accounting for rental car and travel expenses for his aides.
Despite this USPACOM representatives stand firm that Crutchfield “followed the advice of our lawyers to the letter.” It is unknown what kind of discipline will be administered, if any.
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