A judge berated a former sailor this week for claiming that witnessing a fiery crash aboard an aircraft carrier left him with PTSD so severe that it prompted him to sell illegal guns to fuel his drug addiction.
The problem with the man’s story of witnessing a jet fighter crash aboard the George Washington?
It never happened, prosecutors said.
According to a story in the New York Times, Jason Teneyck, 36, was sentenced Tuesday to more than 31 years in prison for his role in a ring that sold prescription drugs and guns. And the judge didn’t stop there, the paper said.
According to the Times, Justice Edward J. McLaughlin took time to ream Teneyck for faking his tale of tragedy.
From the Times’ story by Russ Buettner:
“Justice McLaughlin, of State Supreme Court in Manhattan, told Mr. Teneyck that his ‘cheap, stupid’ perjury insulted the honor of veterans ‘staggering through life’ because of the injuries and trauma they survived in service of their country.
“’It is a disgrace that you would try to saddle yourself to the pain and anxiety those people suffered for us,’ Justice McLaughlin said, loudly emphasizing the final two words. ‘While you may not have had the wherewithal to stay in the Navy, you can’t walk away from your problems.’”
The New York Daily News quoted McLaughlin as saying:
“The people in veteran’s hospitals, the people staggering through life with legitimate post-traumatic stress syndromes, are insulted by the cheap, stupid, perjurious effort that you made, that detracts from their combat and other experiences and it is a disgrace.”
According to the Times report, Teneyck was court-martialed and discharged from the service after he deserted his post in 1999. Despite that, he told the story of the crash to prosecutors at least twice before the trial, the Times reported, and his attorney repeated it during plea negotiations last year “in an effort to get a short sentence.”
On Tuesday, Tenecyk apologized for misleading the court and said he was scared when he said those things, the paper said.