Virginia delegate fights back tears as he pleads politicians to help fellow Special Forces soldier

Sergeant First Class (SFC) Charles Martland has honorably served his country for over a decade as one of its most specialized warriors — even earning the Bronze Star Medal for valor.

As a Special Forces soldier in the United States Army he has endured some of the most mentally strenuous tests and courses the U.S. military can put a service member through, but in 2011 his willpower was tested even further — pushing beyond his limit.

The Green Beret refused to look the other way, even after his superiors told him to turn a blind eye, to a boy being molested and raped repeatedly by a local Afghan police commander.

Virginia delegate, Nick Freitas, served two tours in Iraq as a Special Forces soldier and has become an advocate and supporter of SFC Charles Martland.

Freitas and Martland both served in 3rd Battalion 1st Special Forces group and as any brother in arms would do, he is doing everything in his power to help him.

On Wednesday, Nick Freitas was afforded the opportunity to speak on the VA house floor, he said:

“Four yeas ago in Afghanistan a small boy came up to him and pleaded to him for help along with his mother. This small boy had been tied to post and brutalized repeatedly for days by an Afghan police officer and so SFC Martland approached this individual with his commanding officer along with the child and the mother. They laughed off the accusation. They laughed at him. They laughed at this child.”

Freitas went on to say that SFC Martland could not stand to see the police commander show no remorse and even finding humor in the accusation so he “proceeded to punish him for it.”

The Special Forces’ motto is “De Oppresso Liber” which is Latin for “to free from oppression.”

SFC Martland took this motto to heart when he decided to punish the police commander, who abused and oppressed an innocent boy, with a physical beating.

Sergeant First Class (SFC) Charles Martland. Photo credit: American Center for Law and Justice
Sergeant First Class (SFC) Charles Martland. Photo credit: American Center for Law and Justice

Nick described how Special Forces—which has the unique mission of working in small groups with indigenous populations—develops incredibly strong bonds with the locals whom they have more contact than Americans.

“It gets to a point where you’re not just over there fighting for our constitution and fighting for our citizens. You’re fighting for the people in that neighborhood that you have built this relationship with. They are your family as well,” said Freitas.

Last year while making decisions on personnel cuts the Army Human Resources Command recommended that Martland be discharged—mostly for his disciplinary record stemming from the incident in Afghanistan.

Thousands of people have signed a petition, created by Congressman Duncan Hunter, to keep SFC Martland in the Army.

The official Army decision is expected to be made by March 1, 2016.

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