Four-star general demoted for improper spending
November 13th, 2012
07:40 PM ET

Four-star general demoted for improper spending

Gen. William "Kip" Ward, the first four-star general to command U.S. military operations in Africa, will lose one star and retire as a lieutenant general, the Pentagon announced Tuesday.

The Army also wants $82,000 back from the officer, the statement said.

Investigators found Ward used his rank as a four-star general to shuttle his wife on shopping sprees, enjoyed a lavish beachfront trip and once accepted a defense contractor's gift of going backstage to meet actor Denzel Washington.

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta stripped Ward of a star, sending him to the last rank at which it is believed he served honorably.

"Secretary Panetta insists that leaders within the Department of Defense exemplify both professional excellence and sound judgment," the statement said.

Ward will retire at the lower rank, and consequently a lower pay grade. Retirement pay varies widely depending on years of service, but many four-star generals receive well over $100,000 a year.

Since leaving Africa Command in April 2011, Ward has worked as special assistant to the Army vice chief of staff, serving as a two-star general. Under Army guidelines, a four-star who is not serving at that rank for 60 days is automatically demoted until the case is resolved.

soundoff (81 Responses)
  1. Kiki Fisher

    Seems The Oath of Office, we took To Honor and Protect The USA, gets tarnished when we WANT Something or Persons.

    November 14, 2012 at 6:00 am | Report abuse |
  2. imran Khan

    This is happen when nation sleeping and not worry about tommorow.
    We need to take stand so, our protector must understand we are still awake and watching.

    God Please Bless Us. We still count you as our lord.

    November 14, 2012 at 6:16 am | Report abuse |
  3. sim namore

    "PFC Bill Ward"–has a nice ring to it.

    November 14, 2012 at 7:16 am | Report abuse |
  4. Name*william

    100,000.00 a month? Attention America!! I found the leak in our budget and the cause of our defficet....

    November 14, 2012 at 7:52 am | Report abuse |
    • R Oneil

      $100,000 a year, doesnt say anything about $100,000 a month!!!

      November 14, 2012 at 8:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Geo

      It says 100,000 per year, not per month.

      November 14, 2012 at 8:17 am | Report abuse |
    • well over $100,000 a year

      well over $100,000 a year

      November 14, 2012 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
  5. bella pito

    if you think thats corruption? look into a case happening to a latin lady in louisville ky. on the hand of people of "power" and leadership who supose to protect us. 3:12cv74s federal court /ruthie castro

    November 14, 2012 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
  6. bella pito

    civil case #3:12cv_74s federal court. the fci was advice of threats to this latin lady in louisville ky...but who cares for us latinos? who cares for terrorisim happening right here in USA to a person without power or political conection?

    November 14, 2012 at 8:03 am | Report abuse |
  7. J Kennedy

    Interesting that Cnn just killed my post??? Bias???

    November 14, 2012 at 8:11 am | Report abuse |
    • scotty501

      Paranoid? LOL what a fool

      November 14, 2012 at 8:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Cheese Wonton

      I think what happens is that if more than one person tries to post something at the same time, especially a reply to a previous comment, one of them gets kicked out. It's happened to me many times.

      November 14, 2012 at 10:12 am | Report abuse |
  8. Darkguardian1314

    He got a promotion after serving a year at 2-Stars. So, punishment is handed out if the case isn't resolved in 60 days. What if in the end it was all about nothing? What's up with Generals lately?

    November 14, 2012 at 8:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Eric418

      You're demoted after 60 days because 4 Star Generals make a lot of money and weild a lot of respect, and if you're not doing a 4 Star General job and there's question about your integrity then you can't be a 4 Star General. If the case resolved in his favor he would have gotten his star back, but this guy's fate has already been decided.

      November 14, 2012 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |
  9. ronvan

    TIP OF THE ICEBERG? Wonder how many more General Officer's are looking over their shoulders?

    November 14, 2012 at 9:11 am | Report abuse |
  10. alumette

    Scrutiny seems upon the generals...no one can hide. It's all out there, in public view. Better be careful how and where you get your money and what people you spend your personal time with. The hunt is on.

    November 14, 2012 at 9:28 am | Report abuse |
  11. James Bond

    What a tool, how much did he take that he got away with. this is par for the course i imagine.

    November 14, 2012 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
  12. James Bond

    This is one way to trim the fat

    November 14, 2012 at 9:33 am | Report abuse |
  13. Pam

    "sending him to the last rank at which it is believed he served honorably."

    That just sounds funny. LOL

    November 14, 2012 at 10:05 am | Report abuse |
  14. Pam

    Why would they do that? You do know Obama won right? Why would the winner be seeking revenge?

    November 14, 2012 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
  15. mikrik13

    You could charge anyone in the military for that.

    November 14, 2012 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
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