- Associated Press - Thursday, April 9, 2015

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) - A former Green Beret officer has been stripped of a heroism medal and faces a panel of officers who can toss him out of the Army.

Maj. Mathew Golsteyn will face an administrative hearing known as a board of inquiry at Fort Bragg during the week of May 18, according to a memo by the panel’s top officer, Col. Stuart Goldsmith.

Golsteyn received the Silver Star in 2011 for valor in Afghanistan the previous year and was later approved for an upgrade to the even more prestigious Distinguished Service Cross.

The Army Criminal Investigation Command probed whether Golsteyn committed a war crime related to the killing of a known bombmaker in Afghanistan, according to his supporters. That investigation concluded without Golsteyn being charged charged with a crime.

But the Army has revoked the medal and nomination for higher award and even revoked Golsteyn’s Special Forces tab, a qualification earned by soldiers who complete Special Forces training.

The Army began the process to separate Golsteyn from the service in February, said Lt. Col. Mark Lastoria, a spokesman for U.S. Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg. The board of inquiry will allow Golsteyn to make a case for remaining on active duty, Lastoria said.

A less-than-honorable discharge would prevent Golsteyn from collecting VA benefits from his more than 10 years of service, according to his Colorado-based lawyer, Phil Stackhouse.

“Our goal is for the board members to review and deliberate fairly and objectively,” Stackhouse said.

An Army medical board also is evaluating a medical retirement for Golsteyn based on an operation he had on his heart while serving, spinal damage, a traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress, Stackhouse said.

Golsteyn, who led a 3rd Special Forces Group team in combat, faced problems with Army officials after the CIA shared information it gathered about him while he was going through screening for a potential job, The Washington Post and The Fayetteville Observer reported.

Army Secretary John McHugh revoked Golsteyn’s Silver Star without giving a reason other than citing facts that would have prevented the medal from being approved. McHugh also said in a letter to Golstyen supporter and U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., that Distinguished Service Cross can’t be awarded to anyone acted dishonorably during their service. McHugh does not disclose what Golsteyn was accused of doing.

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