AFA disciplines cadets for drug use


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The Air Force Academy released an update Wednesday about the investigation into 31 cadets' alleged use of illegal drugs. The drug is probably Spice, an incense-type synthetic substance that's illegal and also was at the center of a similar academy investigation last year.

The academy reports that three cadets have received non-judicial punishment. Another four are facing non-judicial punishment.

Four await a command decision, and eight have been cleared of wrongdoing. Investigations involving another dozen are still underway.

Possession of this drug is a crime, but the academy is imposing non-judicial punishment, which usually is reserved for minor infractions. This avenue is typically called an Article 15 under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

The investigation began in January.

The academy said in a news release:

In April 2010, Academy Superintendent Lt. Gen. Mike Gould issued a General Order prohibiting the use of intoxicating substances other than alcohol, caffeine, tobacco or lawfully-used prescribed medications.

Cadets found in violation of this general order can face appropriate disciplinary actions that may include trial by court-martial, administrative discipline or involuntary separation from the Air Force.

However, all cadets under investigation are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

In another disciplinary action, the academy also acknowledged that a soon-to-be-graduating football player, Asher Clark, didn't travel with the team's seniors to Washington, D.C., to meet with President Obama on Monday because he was "not meeting Academy standards currently and wasn't allowed to travel with the team and represent USAFA," academy spokesman Lt. Col. John Bryan says in an e-mail. Asked how Asher didn't meet standards, Bryan refused to say, citing privacy laws.


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