Pfc. David Lawrence Ping!
I am furious. It is unforgivable that the Army has decided to continue the court-martial process against my son after their own experts have concluded that David was suffering so severely from PTSD and schizophrenia that he could not appreciate the wrongfulness of his actions....
Between December and January, the Army psychiatrist at Fort Carson whose duty it was to treat my son for his mental illness refused to prescribe David the anti-psychotic medication needed to treat his schizophrenia, the necessary medication that would allow David to cope with this mental illness. This doctors bias nearly cost my son his life.
Like the Army psychiatrist who treated my son with total disregard for his mental illness, the Army prosecutors in this case are now attempting to convict David of murder in spite of what their own experts have concluded. I am appalled, sickened and angry.
David asked for help before Mr. Mohebullah was killed. Instead of real mental health treatment, David was given a short stay at a combat stress clinic, he was prescribed two different psychotropic medications, and then with no monitoring and little if any instructions, he was sent to guard a high value prisoner, a duty he had never preformed. Davids command knew he was suffering; other troops had reported it to them. Yet they still put him in a situation where something like this could happen. In a situation where the Army is trying to hold my son solely accountable for the killing of Mr. Mohebullah, I would like to know who is holding our government accountable for their actions?
David is being court-martialed as if he were not suffering from a mental illness. To make matters worse, the Army is now pretending that the Taliban commander who was killed in this case has now become an unknown male of apparent Afghan descent. The Army should not be able to pick, choose and change the facts of in an effort to hide their own responsibility in this case. Sadly, this appears to be exactly what is happening.
The bottom line is this. My son has severe schizophrenia and severe post traumatic stress disorder. The Governments own experts in this case have concluded that Davids mental illnesses were so severe that he could not appreciate the nature of his actions. At a time my son is most deserving of his countrys support and understanding, a most terrible decision has been made to continue his court-martial. From where I sit, it seems the Army believes the best defense for their own responsibility in this case is an offensive against my son. My heart is broken. My son is broken. The Armys version of justice is broken.
January 31, 2011
More on the story from the Denver Post...