Lt. Gen. Maria Gervais, Army Training and Doctrine Command Deputy Commander, and Army Maj. Jessica Dawson, a West Point associate professor, used their authority and government access in an attempt to unofficially investigate and punish an active-duty whistleblower for criticizing the Biden administration and various Army leaders.
According to private text messages and emails obtained by Breitbart News, Gervais and Dawson used official government resources to hunt for the anonymous whistleblower, identify them, and have them punished for speaking against the Biden administration and Army leadership, despite a lack of evidence.
Despite lacking evidence, Gervais and Dawson reportedly labeled the whistleblower an “insider threat” and repeatedly accused him of serving as “counterintelligence.” Breitbart News noted that the accusations by Gervais and Dawson were seemingly used as an effort to involve the Army Criminal Investigative Division (CID), which has the power as an independent agency to investigate serious felonies.
According to Pat Wier, a Navy reservist and civilian defense attorney, an investigation by CID would first require the designation of a significant threat. He described Gervais and Dawson’s accusations as “wrongful.”
“His alleged actions did not rise to the level of a serious crime, or any crime at all,” Wier said. Instead, Breitbart reported that based on private communications, the investigation seems to have been an attempt by military officials to utilize government powers to punish the whistleblower for political dissent.
According to Breitbart, Gervais and Dawson’s investigation lasted almost a year, aided by current and former progressive military members. The investigation resulted in the public identification of the suspected whistleblower, an Army general’s former aide filing an inspector general complaint against the whistleblower, and the inspector general’s system being politically weaponized against the whistleblower’s social media posts that criticized the Biden administration.
The inspector general complaint resulted in a 15-6 investigation into the whistleblower, which led to Army Chief Warrant Officer 2 Samuel Shoemate being charged for violating Army Regulation 600-20 by “posting derogatory and disrespectful images/memes on multiple social accounts … towards different Senior Officials and Military Leaders.”
The 15-6 investigation also claimed that Shoemate had violated Uniform Code of Military Justice Articles 88 (Contempt towards Senior Officials), 89 (Disrespect toward Superior Commissioned Officers, 133 (Conduct Unbecoming of an Officer and Gentleman), and DOD Instruction 5400.17 Official Use of Social Media for Public Affairs Purposes.
According to Breitbart News, the officer in charge of the 15-6 investigation officially recommended “appropriate adverse administrative action and/or appropriate UCMJ action” against the whistleblower. Shoemate was eventually given a General Officer Memorandum of Reprimand and retired from the U.S. Army on Aug. 1, 2023.
Shoemate has indicated that he will publicly speak about the incident in the future. The retired Army member recently told Breitbart News, “The DOD publicly boasts about its adherence to the law with numerous checks and balances in place to prevent unlawful conduct, but the shadow policy it actually operates under allows senior officers and officials to act with impunity as seen here. “
Shoemate claimed Gervais’s collusion with “other senior officials” to carry out an unofficial investigation of an active military member “with the use of government resources is an example of “larger, systemic abuses observed within the DOD in recent years.”
This was a breaking news story. The details were periodically updated as more information became available.