Senior enlisted adviser to Joint Chiefs chairman suspended pending investigation

Army Command Sgt. Maj. John W. Troxell was suspended on Wednesday.

September 27, 2018, 4:19 PM

The senior enlisted adviser to Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Joseph Dunford has been temporarily suspended from his current duties pending the outcome of an Army inspector general investigation into a complaint of alleged misconduct, according to the Joint Staff.

Army Command Sgt. Maj. John W. Troxell has served in his position since December 2015.

He will perform duties as a special assistant to the Vice Director of the Joint Staff while the Army conducts its investigation, the Joint Staff said.

"Due to the ongoing Army investigation, it would be inappropriate to comment on the nature of the alleged misconduct or investigation details," said Col. Patrick Ryder, a Joint Staff spokesperson said in a statement. "We will wait for a full accounting of the facts and will not presuppose any findings or outcomes."

A U.S. official told ABC News that Troxell was suspended on Wednesday.

He was originally supposed to travel with Dunford to Europe this week, but did not end up accompanying him on the trip because of the investigation, the official said.

As the senior enlisted adviser, Troxell provides advice and counsel to the chairman on the needs of enlisted service members throughout the U.S. military. In that role, he and his predecessors routinely travel to bases around the world to meet with enlisted service members.

It's not known whether the suspension is related to a Facebook post he made earlier this year. In January, a Facebook post written by Troxell raised eyebrows after it instructed troops to beat ISIS fighters with a shovel if they don't surrender.

"If they surrender, we will safeguard them to their detainee facility cell, provide them chow, a cot and due process," Troxell wrote. "HOWEVER, if they choose not to surrender, then we will kill them with extreme prejudice, whether that be through security force assistance, by dropping bombs on them, shooting them in the face, or beating them to death with our entrenching tools."

An entrenching tool is a collapsible shovel-like tool often carried by military personnel.

When asked by ABC News about the post, Troxell's spokesman, Master Sgt. Robert Couture, said Troxell's comments "emphasized the sincerity of the coalition's resolve in defeating ISIS, or Daesh, who over the past four years, have committed countless atrocities against men, women and children around the world."