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Thread: Waiver/security clearance

  1. #1
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    Default Waiver/security clearance

    First off I would like to say hello, I'm new to this forum and pursuing a career as a US Army soldier. I'm 17 and working on my 4th semester in college, but my goal for a while has been to join the armed forces.

    My problem is as follows:
    I am looking at several different MOS's, particularly 18X and 89D. However, SF and EOD both require a security clearance. I am physically fit, medically sound, and confident I can achieve a perfect score on the ASVAB (I managed an 88 out of 99 on the practice/assessment at the recruiter's office, without studying or having known I would be taking a test.) Unfortunately, I do have a criminal record. All of my offenses are NTC (Non-traffic Citation)/Summary offenses, so no misdemeanors and certainly no felonies.
    My problem is in the quantity of offenses: I have 2 Criminal Trespass, 2 Harassment, and 2 Disorderly Conduct. One of each of the aforementioned offenses is a pending charge; when my recruiter did a background check to see if they were even on record yet, they were not. I would plead not guilty to all 3, but I do not have the money for legal representation, so I'm sort of forced to plead guilty.
    My recruiter said that if I could shake at least the harassment and the disorderly, I would probably not need a waiver to enlist, but that if all the charges stick, I would need a waiver and therefore be ineligible (or at least very unlikely) to get any level of security clearance.

    While 89D (EOD) was my first choice, I have tentatively accepted the fact that my record will make it impossible for me to pursue that MOS. I looked around the forum extensively for more info on waivers, and have seen several knowledgeable senior members suggest to those interested in SF that they go infantry first, to both gain experience and to give them a shot at receiving a moral waiver later on.
    Is there a standard procedure or guideline for how long a soldier with a criminal record must serve before he is able to have a shot at getting a security clearance? Or does it depend on the nature of the offense(s), how long ago it/they occurred, and/or the soldier's record of honorable service while enlisted?
    Basically, I would like to pursue Special Forces down the road, and want to know what I can realistically expect in terms of how long I must wait, and what I must do, in order to have a shot at getting a security clearance.

    Thanks,
    Adam

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    The Chopping Block papachop's Avatar
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    These things change regularly with the Army. A year ago, they were taking waivers like crazy. Now, not so much. Whether or not the charges were counted as misdemeanor, gross mis, or felonies does not matter to the Army - they have their own criteria for how they count. I can't see 3 trespasses, 2 harassments, and 2 disorderlies going over very well.
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    Yeah, my recruiter was saying that the harassment weighed more heavily than the trespass, for example (I'm assuming since it hints more at personal character/values.)

    Are you saying my chances of getting into the army are slim? Or just of ever being able to pursue a career requiring security clearances?

    Also, one of the two trespasses was expunged a little over a year ago; I don't know if that makes a difference. Whether or not a computer background check will find it initially, I would rather be upfront and honest about it than get into trouble later on.
    Last edited by CamelNo.9; 07-06-2010 at 04:35 PM.

  • #4
    Senior Member Nightflyer's Avatar
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    Camel9, you might have to wait, If you want a High Speed Career in our Army. Yes at one time we we're taking waviers like crazy but that was awhile ago. You still might get a chance now to join the Infantry within the next year or two. MP, our resident recruiter would know better. But, I do know ALL about being prepared for SFAS. if you want to class up EOD or SFAS..No way right now. The pipeline is full with top knoch recruits reaching their goals. My advice to you is to get all you're legal troubles squared away including you're pending fines and stay in school and graduate with you're degree. You need to continue working hard to turn over a new leaf. You're a young guy and there's plenty of time to fomulate a plan to continue reaching you're goals of a high speed job. You are already or you wouldn't be here asking questions. Infantry provides great experience on the road to SF / QP world. We all make mistakes. It's what we do TODAY that determines TOMORROW..Things change all the time depending on the needs of our Army. Maybe within two years you may have a shot. By then you might be good to go with no debt or pending fines. SFAS is not meant to be easy. It's a tough grid and a hard road. Many try. Most fail. Don't be one.

    Good Luck Adam..

    Nightflyer
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  • #5
    Moderator MPclk2006's Avatar
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    You cant even do SF right now as you are 17, you have to be 20...and yes if you have all those charges which ARE at least misdemeanors you either are DQ and need a waiver or not join at all...

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    Quote Originally Posted by MPclk2006 View Post
    all those charges which ARE at least misdemeanors
    None of them are misdemeanors, they're all summary offenses, which are the non-traffic equivalent of a driving citation. I'm not saying you're wrong; I know that they are misdemeanors in many states, but in PA where I live, they are all summary NTC's and considered local ordinance violations and tried as such in a district court. Steeper offenses go to at least the county court.

    Although I suppose the Army isn't going to say that my criminal trespass charge is any less serious than the next guy's, just because it counts as a misdemeanor in his state but only as a summary in mine.
    Last edited by CamelNo.9; 07-06-2010 at 05:37 PM.

  • #7
    Moderator MSG Glenn's Avatar
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    It's possible that you might get in but at this time doubtful. You have too many offenses against you. This reflects on your character.

    Recruiters are writing as many contracts that are available. There are no shortage of recruits & the Army now has the pick of the litter in signing people up. There is no necessity in most cases for a Recruiter to get anybody in that requires waivers.

    Keep working with your Recruiter. If he's willing to submit a request for waivers that'll be great. Whether you'll get them is another matter entirely. It'll be out of his hands once they're submitted.

    Possibly some time in the future when there are fewer recruits & time has passed since your last offense it might be easier enlisting. Keep trying if that's what you really want.

    MPclk is an Active Army Recruiter & knows what's going on. If he says that you'll be DQed form enlisting you can pretty much take it to the bank.

    I wouldn't count on getting into any Special Operations jobs at this time. From everything I've heard SF & Rangers are getting all of the qualified volunteers they can handle. They can afford to chose only those that have squeaky clean records.
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    Short Timer CWO Sharkey's Avatar
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    wow for a 17 year old kid, you seem like a very smart person to already have 4 semesters of college. Why can't you stay away from trouble?

    Anyway, due to your age and lack of maturity; I will focus on finishing college and when you are done in two years and some time has lapsed with your misconduct incidents; then I will pursue the Army.

    I dont care if they were small incidents but an harassment, trespassing and disorderly conduct is not taken lightly. And that type of offense is not expected of a soldier, so I hope you learned your lesson.

    Dont worry, your time will come.
    Last edited by CWO Sharkey; 07-07-2010 at 06:56 AM.
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  • #9
    Moderator MSG Glenn's Avatar
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    Heed the Chief's advice. I also forgot to mention, & what MPclk alluded to, was the fact that the Army might consider some offenses you've commited differently than the civilian courts do. What might not be a misdemeanor to civilian authorities might be considerd as one by the army. Same goes for anything that a local law might be considered to be a misdemeanor could be considered a felony to the Army.
    Proud Dad of a US Army Airborne Ranger SSG
    Retired US Army 1SG/MSG, Airborne Infantry, G-3, Instructor
    Former USN - Submarines, USS Chopper (SS 342) & Navy Diver, UDT 21
    I was a Soldier. I am a Soldier. I will always be a Soldier.

  • #10
    Moderator MPclk2006's Avatar
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    I dont care what the local court said I am telling you what the Army classifies them as...

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