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Wrong Jesse Bratcher?

Jesse Bratcher

Oregon National Guard Association

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Oregon National Guard Association

2501 Shasta Way

Klamath Falls, Oregon 97601

United States

Company Description

The Oregon National Guard Association is a professional organization that supports the constitutional roles and missions of the National Guard by influencing legislative, congressional and executive action. We exist for you; the men and women of the Ore ... more

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Background Information

Web References

National Veterans Foundation - Blog

www.nvf.org [cached]

just finished working with Bud and his team from The Bunker Project, helping to defend a young Veteran with severe PTSD named Jesse Bratcher, from John Day, Oregon, who was accused of killing a man he believed had raped his girlfriend.

The story of the defendant, Jesse Bratcher, is one of a normal, law-abiding young man whose mental condition was changed dramatically, for the worse, by his experiences in the Iraq war. He was raised by his grandparents in Eastern Oregon, who describe him as a "perfect boy."He graduated high school with a B average. esse had no problems with the law before he joined the Oregon National Guard, and was sent to Iraq for a combat tour as a machine gunner for an armored division. esse had a lifelong aversion to guns, which made the military a strange choice, until you consider the lack of options for a poor boy with a high school education from rural Oregon.
Jesse's unit was sent to Iraq, where he took the U.S. rules of engagement very seriously, even memorizing them. He twice refused to fire on civilians his platoon engaged, even writing up a complaint when men from his unit shot and killed a civilian Iraqi who was armed, but not acting in a hostile manner. esse's best friend was killed during their tour when his Humvee, in front of Jesse, was hit by an IED explosion. is commanders say Jesse was never the same afterwards.
When Jesse returned from Iraq, his grandparents noticed a significant difference in his behavior. he sweet, easy-going boy they had raised was now prone to angry outbursts. He had trouble sleeping. e spent days sleeping in the woods and set up perimeters and establishing fields-of-fire, where he carried, slept with, and maintained his AK-47.
The men in his reserve unit noticed a difference, too. esse began missing formations, when he had never had a problem before. e had a particular stare that made the other men uneasy. e complained of flashbacks. e was angry all the time.Eventually, a commander suggested he visit the VA in Boise, Idaho 4and get checked out.
After numerous visits to the VA, and one rejection of benefits, Jesse was diagnosed with PTSD, with a 100% disabled rating, and started receiving treatment.
Things started to improve for Jesse.
That night, Jesse put the barrel of his AK-47 in his mouth and almost pulled the trigger. wo days later, he got in the car with his girlfriend with the intention of reporting the rape to the police. He instead ended up on the front lawn of the man his girlfriend accused of raping her.
He had tried several times to contact the police. e was unsuccessful. fter confronting the alleged rapist, Jessie experienced a flashback during which he shot and killed the victim.
The defense team argued that he should not be held criminally liable for the killing, as his PTSD, produced by his war experiences, made him legally insane at the time of the shooting.

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