Saturday, October 25, 2014
December 3, 1985 — October 25, 2005
When Chris turned 17, he got his mother to sign the papers so he could join the Army Reserves. Part of the reason he joined was the educational benefits that he could use when he graduated from high school. The other reason was the terrorists in Afghanistan and Iraq. He went to his basic training at Fort Jackson the summer of 2003. He would wear his uniform to high school twice a week during his senior year.
After he graduated from high school he was interested in going to Indiana University and he met the love of his life. Angela is a good hearted girl who was just a few months older than Chris but that made no difference to him. He had asked her to marry him about six months after they had met and her family had adopted him like he was their son.
In 2004 his reserve unit in Indiana said that a unit in Michigan needs a few people to go on a deployment to Iraq starting in the summer of 2005. Without hesitation he volunteered for this deployment and was transferred to the Michigan reserve unit. He was looking into buying a house so
that when he married Angela they had a place of their own. He wanted to get married before he went to Iraq but Angela said that they should wait because they would have plenty of time after he got back from Iraq for that.
that when he married Angela they had a place of their own. He wanted to get married before he went to Iraq but Angela said that they should wait because they would have plenty of time after he got back from Iraq for that.
On October 25, 2005, Chris was driving a 5 ton truck pulling an armed HUMV that was going to have maintenance work done on it. They were just outside of Basra, Iraq on a 6 lane highway with a gravel median separating the 3 lanes. Chris was driving the number two vehicle in the convoy when on the other side of the road they saw a civilian BMW flip over. The NCO with him yelled IED! but they discovered it was not an Improvised Explosive Device. The convoy from Chris on back stopped to help the civilian driver. The senior officer on site ordered Chris to pull his 5 ton across the road so the weapon on the HUMV could provide defense in front of the convoy. Everyone was to get out and provide security while the medics helped out the Iraqi civilian driver. Chris was standing on the left front side of his 5 ton with his weapon at the ready, providing a secure perimeter when it happened.
Unknown to the convoy the rear check point had let a 3 SUV British security detail enter the convoy’s perimeter. It was 850 meters from the rear check point to where Chris was standing.
The next morning around 10:30am, an Army Chaplain and a Sergeant First Class were at my door.
This is where the real story about Chris begins. I was told that Chris had been killed in an accident the night before and was handed a business card to the Fort Hood Casualty Affairs Office. They told me to call them and they would give me more information. I called them and they told me as much as what I had already been told. My family was dealing with the Casualty Affairs Office at Fort Knox my father gave me the phone number to that office so I gave them a call as well. They said they did not have a copy of the divorce decree and needed to see it so I faxed it to them. It was at this point I was asked as the primary next of kin what I wanted to have done with the body. We had planned to have him sent back home to Indiana to go with what had already been planned. It was about this time they discovered I had served in the military and all information about Chris was only volunteered if I asked, and then it was limited.
Even though by Army regulation I was the primary next of kin, that was removed from me. On the Friday after he was killed I asked what the time frame was for him getting back home. I was told that when he got to Dover they would have to do an autopsy and then embalm him that this would take about 72 hours. That Friday he had not left Iraq yet but they would let me know anything when it happened. Over the weekend and Monday no one called me about Chris so Tuesday I called Fort Knox. When I asked the first thing out of the mouth of the Casualty Affairs Officer was, “Uh Oh, they have already sent an escort.” I asked what that meant because I had never had this happen before. They said Chris had arrived from Iraq Sunday night and that Chris was going to be coming in to Indianapolis the next night. I had to go to Fort Hood and get my airplane tickets to leave the next day. I got to Indiana a few hours before Chris did.
No one beyond the Chaplain and the SFC came to see me before I left for Indiana. That night my ex-wife and I met with the Casualty Affairs Officer from the reserve unit in Indiana. We went to the Indianapolis airport with a hearse to pick up Chris. The next time I saw Chris was the Flag draped coffin on the loading dock at the freight section at the airport. The Casualty Affairs officer did not bring enough people to put Chris into the hearse. The Casualty Affairs Officer, his driver, the escort, two police officers, Angela’s aunt, and I. put Chris in the hearse. At the funeral home I asked the funeral director if an autopsy had been done on Chris. He said he could not see that one had been done. Even when I got to Indiana no one from the military came to see me to offer their condolences. The Casualty Affairs Officer spent all of his time with my ex-wife even though his driver had been assigned to be her escort. Even though Chris was at his battle station with his weapon loaded ready to return fire if fired upon, he did not receive the Purple Heart. so before we buried him I gave him mine that I had received when I was in the Marines when I was in Beirut, Lebanon.
Angela had been named as the beneficiary of Chris’ SGLI and had a power of attorney to deal with Chris’ affairs before he was killed. At a meeting Angela had with the Casualty Affairs Officer. he gave her copies of the interim casualty report. When I asked for a copy of the documents I was told I would have to file a freedom of information act request to get them. When the media reported about Chris’ funeral on TV all of his family and Angela were mentioned but I was not. It was a sad joke that we made that I was nobody, just his father.
When I got back to Fort Hood and told them what had happened they could not believe it. The woman at Fort Hood that I was dealing with I had known when I was in the Army gave me the documents I could not get in Indiana.
It took about 4 months for the Army to send me the reports about the events of Chris’ death. One of the first documents I received was the autopsy results. The cause of death was blunt force trauma, they claimed. A few days later I received a copy of the final casualty report stating the cause of death was blast force trauma. It was when I got the final report from the Army investigator I had more questions than they answered. The first lie was the conditions at the time of the accident. In the report they said it was pitch black outside at 6:30pm but I had been over there and knew this is not right. I have a program for star watching that allows me to program in day, time, and place. When I put in the day, time and as close to the place of the events there was almost 2 hours of daylight when it happened.
The blame for the accident was placed on several American soldiers. rather than the driver of the SUV that had hit him. The investigator said because the British security detail driver was allowed to enter the convoys perimeter he was not at fault. I contacted the British government about this accident but they informed me they knew nothing about it. It was not a British SUV like the Army investigator said. I found out that Chris was fully conscious from the moment he was hit to the moment he died. One of the things that got me was that the onsite medical personnel took 15 minutes to determine that a traumatic surgical amputation of his right leg was urgent and he needed to be Medevaced out.
It was during the flight to the hospital that Chris died. The death certificate lists cause of death as traumatic amputation of the right leg but the autopsy does not list amputation at all. Many of the injuries listed in the autopsy were not evident on Chris. On the autopsy report the cause of death was blunt force trauma but the final casualty report the cause of death was blast force trauma. That is not a misspelling that is a mistake. All reports are screened to be sure they are accurate.
The driver of the SUV, a British citizen, works for a company called Erinys which is a South African company with its home office in London. This company serves one propose and that is to supply mercenaries to hot spots world wide. The driver a British citizen was one of these mercenaries. The director of operation in Iraq for this company is a good friend of Dick Cheney and was supposed to become the Prime Minister of Iraq but things did not work out the way they had planned. Erinys has a web site that states they have an office in Houston, Texas, but when you go to the address it is nothing but a post office box. The company states it has a manager of operation at this office but they have failed to register this office with our government. Failing to register their office is a violation of federal law. Neither the mercenary company nor the driver of the SUV is not being held accountable for the wrongful death of SGT Christopher Monroe. I was told that because the Army investigator blamed U.S. soldiers for letting the SUV pass they were the cause of death. There is a belief that the investigator was paid off by the mercenary company to put the blame on our soldiers because of the flaws in statements and documents.
The driver makes the point in his statement that at the time of the accident he was told it was not his fault. There is no way anyone could make that statement without an investigation. The SUV was destroyed that night burned in place because they said it could not be recovered but when the investigator went to the accident site later the burned our SUV was gone. That was the way of destroying any evidence.
The Casualty Affairs Officer when he received the personal effects of my son by regulation he was to hold them for 40 days so that any legal action could be made in dividing them between the mother, father, and fiancée. The Casualty Affairs Officer, who was a Captain, was advised by an Inspector General Officer of the rank of Colonel. He told the Captain to follow regulations. The Captain told the Colonel what he could do with the regulation and immediately gave all of the personal effects to the mother who said she would return things to the father and fiancée.
When I was in the military, regulation was the heart of the operations of the military. You can add to the regulation but you could never take away from the regulation. I have a JAG lawyer and Inspector General Officer who agree that by regulation I should have been the primary next of kin and the one to receive the personal effects, but the Army refuses to agree with their own regulations. I have even gone to my congressional representative and senator in getting things corrected but they have not done a thing. One of the things I was promised was photographs taken by the unit photographer of Chris in his casket at the funeral home. The Army refused to answer all requests made of them.
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
Shauna was held back in boot camp from stress fractures in both feet, she was in medical rehab for 6 months, on several prescriptions including Percocet. I believe this is where her addiction started.
Since that first phone call that came from an ex military girl who served with Shauna in Alaska, she called us before any military personnel contacted us. She told my husband that Shauna was dead from an overdose. He hung up on her and called my friend I worked with because my phone was not working, he gave me the devastating news, I did not believe him and broke down and screamed.
Everything that happened made no sense at all to us. We thought it was a sick joke that was being played on us. Weird thing was that my phone stopped working that morning, i was running errands and took my time since I was at the mall, still not realizing that my phone was not working. Shauna came home for my birthday in August, we were so happy, We went to Alaska to be with her on her 21st birthday in Alaska.
2 days after getting back from Phoenix, Shauna was given a drug test and failed due to her use of Percocet. Shauna admitted to her sgt. that she took Percocet, she was then sent immediately to Colorado for rehab.
She was sent back to Alaska after 30 days, and was sent there with several prescriptions. She cried on the phone to me, she was so afraid to go back to Alaska, but I was telling her she had to finish what she started. She desperately wanted out of the Army. She was to be home by October 31st. On an other than honorable discharge. Shauna gave her prescriptions to a fellow soldier and he would meet her twice a day to give her the correct dose. He had her back.
Two weeks later she was gone.
According to the CID. Shauna was with 2 soldiers and they claim they were watching movies, and about 2 am they left to go to bed. At 6 am Shauna failed to show up at formation and a soldier was sent to her room to get her.
When they got into the room, she was found in her bed not breathing. They tried to resuscitate her but she was gone. The CID said they were not sure why she passed away until they did the autopsy and they found several needle marks in both her arms. There were no signs of drugs found in her room, which means someone cleaned up!
The detective on her case said she was a first time user and it killed her because she was so clean from rehab. We were devastated, every person Shauna knew, said NO WAY!! That was a drug she would never take. Her bank account was also used at 4 am and we were told Shauna died between 2 and 4 am. When they tested her card for prints it was clean, NO prints at all not even Shauna’s. Also the ATM on the base we were told had no camera to see who took the money out of her account. No cameras on a military base!!! We were in a daze from the moment that call came from a civilian. On January 1st, 3 months after we buried Shauna, we received a phone call asking what we wanted to do with Shauna’s heart and brain. We were completely taken aback since NO ONE ever told us they were keeping her vital organs. Why!! We were told that they had to do testing to see if Shauna died from anything genetic, we were already told why she died, why keep her organs and not tell us. We were told it was a mistake, we should have been told in the paperwork but we were not!
We had to bury Shauna’s organs in an infant coffin placed on top of her coffin.
I don’t understand why this soldier who brought drugs into my daughter’s room was still in the military 2 months after she died.
They knew he was a dealer and user. He was questioned 12 hours later and the CID said all they smelled in his room was bleach, they were all told to clean their barracks! But why before checking them first??
This soldier, lawyered up and they said he refused to talk, they closed her case after a year. He was finally discharged, but should have been charged in connection with my daughter’s death. If anyone knows who the other soldier was that night or anyone knows what happened that night, please contact us by email through this website.
Sunday, October 12, 2014
After Sept. 11, 2001, Loren Janeczko returned to active service in the Army.
On Oct. 12, 2001, one short month later, Sgt. Janeczko was killed in a “shoot out” with New Jersey Police. According to media reports, he was supposed to have “flipped out” and started shooting people, wounding two fellow soldiers on the Ft. Dix Army base, fleeing in a vehicle, and then wounding two New Jersey police officers, and taking a hostage before he was shot and killed by police.
According to the richly detailed story presented to the media in a press conference, the hostage got away when Loren’s gun jammed and Loren was then killed by a member of the New Jersey Police.
The Army claimed that there had been a “mental health hearing” the morning of his death, and that “two soldiers were accompanying him to clean out his locker” prior to discharge.
It was a year after his death when the investigation reports, requested in October 2001 through the Federal Freedom of Information Act, were received. The reports are not complete. Much of the information is redacted. One brief report is from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The other, more voluminous in terms of paper, was from the Army Criminal Investigation Division (CID).
In a brief sentence, within the Army CID report, it is revealed that NO HOSTAGE WAS EVER TAKEN. This was confirmed on the telephone by a CID officer. Why would such a story be fabricated and fed to the media? Why has this story never been corrected in the media? The hostage story was not a garbling of events. It was presented in a formal press conference given by the New Jersey State Police spokesperson a day or two after the incident. It was a deliberate dissemination of misinformation.
Both the FBI and CID reports refer to the fact that Loren made an allegation of sexual assault against soldiers in his sleeping quarters four days before he was killed. The reports state that the Department of Defense Police on Ft. Dix were investigating the matter. He was placed in a private room for his own safety and security. He wasn’t being escorted to his locker and there wasn’t any “mental health hearing” the morning of his death. The commander had decided to turn the tables on him, as is frequently done in the Army, and to accuse him of assault. This is how the Armed Services get rid of whistleblowers and people who “make waves” by expecting to be treated with respect.
On October 12, 2001, a commanding officer decided to interrogate him for what was described, by a DOD officer’s statement to the CID, as a prolonged period of time. He was not allowed to make any arguments in his own defense and became increasingly stressed, as he watched the accused soldiers walking freely near the office and speaking to one another.
At this point, according to the report, this commanding officer decided to search his room and locker. He was ordered to lay out his possessions on the bed. Reportedly, rolled up inside a “dirty T-shirt” was a gun and ammunition. Strangely, the ‘statement’ of the DOD Police Officer In Charge (OIC), for that day’s shift, states: “…had been searching Sgt. Janeczko’s wall locker and as he had removed some items, some ammunition had fallen on the table.” Note that the OIC made no mention of a GUN! In fact, Loren possessed no gun at Ft. Dix which used that caliber ammunition.
The commanding officer, by her own statement, corroborated by other statements, said, “Now we’ve got you, buddy! You are going to jail.” She then left Loren in the room with two other soldiers and events proceeded.
When the DOD police were called and asked for a copy of their investigation into the allegation of sexual assault, their first response was that there was no report of any allegation or investigation. After the JAG and Inspector General were contacted, the chief of the DOD Police stated that there was, indeed, an investigation report. He supplied the case number and said that it would be supplied to the family. Two weeks after that conversation, a person in the DOD Police office stated that the report would be delayed because the “legal department” was reviewing the report. A month after the request was made, another fragmentary and incomplete report was received. The summary states that the matter would be handled by the Unit Commander, however, a DOD police officer’s statement claimed that the sexual assault investigation was ongoing at the time of the Commander’s “interrogation”.
The CID report also states that the death investigation was jointly handled with the New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice. They house exhibit 16, which includes the total summary of the investigation, all crime scene photos and evidence.
The New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice states that they are not subject to the Freedom of Information Act and that they will not give up any or all of their investigation reports. New Jersey has an Open Records Act and a Government Records Council, which has the power to help people get such information. At present, all requests for investigation reports have been denied and appealed. It seems that in the “opposite speak” so prevalent in America today, the Act is actually a Closed Records Act, designed to protect the police from scrutiny by the public.
The autopsy report supplied by the New Jersey Medical Examiner’s Office contains no forensic information. There is no ballistics information. There is no powder burn analysis, even though it was noted that Loren’s hands were “bagged.” A letter to the ME resulted in a reply that requests for further information have been referred to the NJ Division. of Criminal Justice.
I have now received an unredacted (although still incomplete) Investigation Report from the State of NJ. I also requested and received photographs, audio and video tapes, and other evidence. This required hiring a lawyer and going to the NJ Superior Court Law Division. Common law, in most States, allows the family to have access to such records.
By cross-referencing information contained within the report, I know that other specific documents have been withheld. My next task is to find someone in the government who will listen to reason and will follow the law in regard to access.
This investigation report sheds a new light on the events immediately leading up to my son’s death. I will not publicly reveal these facts here, but the story told to the media by the police and the Army differs wildly from what actually happened.
The Army, in the meantime, insists that they must suspend the re-investigation of the case and a DoD Hotline case, while individual civilian police sue the Army in the US District Court for money damages. Naturally, this makes no sense at all to the family. We have never threatened to sue the Army and we know that, in any case, we are precluded from doing that by the Feres Doctrine.
There will surely be an appeal if the tort case is dismissed, which will prolong the inactivity of the investigations. It is all a well-established method of withholding information. I maintain that there is no valid excuse for suspending and withholding new investigation material from an immediate family trying to understand what happened.
No forensics have been released by any of the three agencies involved. Repeated requests of the FBI have only resulted in FOIA denials so far.
I will press on.
The Department of Defense Hotline Inspector General, in a written report, has acknowledged that the Department of Defense Police on Ft. Dix did not meet their responsibility of investigating a reported sexual assault. They did no investigation at all, instead, turning the matter over to Command, as has been very common in the military services. (This is often the time when soldiers who have reported sexual assault by fellow service members will be punished for doing so.)
I have also obtained the depositions in the Civil Tort. This turned out to contain much valuable information about Loren’s death and the events leading up to it. There are also specific references to additional investigation material, including who possesses it. Some of this material was already requested in the Superior Court and declared “lost.”
The officer who has referred to herself as his Commander, was actually a Major and the Mobilization Commander, and had only met Loren the morning of his death. She set the day in motion and then proceeded to manage the media reporting from Ft. Dix. She also arrived at the scene of Loren’s death and identified his body at the Medical Examiner’s Office, referring to herself the whole time as “his Commander.” Her name appeared in the autopsy report incorrectly, either an inadvertent clerical error or a deliberate attempt to mislead. It was revealed in her testimony that she had previously worked in the NJ Attorney General’s Office and that the lead investigator in the death investigation was someone she referred to as her “buddy.”
There is much more to this story, but the Army is being given an opportunity to do the actual investigation of the events leading up to Loren’s death. It’s been eight years. I wonder how much longer they will take.
I continue to ferret out information and documents, even though certain specific documents and evidence are being withheld without explanation by people who simply have the power to keep our family at bay. I’m hoping that someone from the giant blue wall of silence (police) or the giant green wall of silence (Army) will want to unburden his/her conscience after ten years. I’m not looking to sue, I just want to have the truth come out.
I have serious concerns about the climate of our country in terms of the Media and of the inordinate power of Federal agencies to keep secrets.
The print and electronic media in this country is willing to publish whatever they are told by police without any independent verification. The “facts” published are fed by other unverified “facts” which appear to fit the pattern of whatever scenario has been presented. The media is now an entertainment business, which does not encourage actual investigative reporting with very few exceptions.
As we know from current events, the Federal Government now has usurped the power of the people in the United States. Expectations that public servants must respond to requests for information are ignored and the people have become the servants of the Government.
We can reverse these injustices, but only if each of us makes the personal effort to challenge the government, at any level, and insisting that government honors its responsibility to provide truthful information.
If you have any information about this case, please contact me through this website.
Link to interview: Donna Janeczko/Dr. John Johnson