While U.S. Congressman Allen West and his staff are outraged when his privacy allegedly is invaded — remember the letter obtained by Gossip Extra in which ultra-Conservative West asked his wife to be his porn star? — West may not be as protective when it comes to his U.S. Army men’s privacy!
Gossip Extra has recovered parts of a purple heart application for a wounded Fort Hood field artillery sergeant who served under West in Iraq. It was discarded from the controversial West’s home with his household trash — something that possibly breaks several privacy laws!
The paperwork includes medical and mental health information about West’s underling as well as confidential personal papers.
Gossip Extra is withholding the sergeant’s identity but has been attempting to reach him in Texas. Several phone numbers assigned to him have been disconnected. The site is returning the wounded hero’s documents to his proper address along with a note thanking him for his service.
Meanwhile West, a former lieutenant colonel, is in a dog fight for the Treasure Coast’s congressional seat. He was elected in 2010 in Broward and Palm Beach counties but moved to a Republican district for the Nov. 6 election.
He is opposed by Democrat Patrick Murphy.
The military papers were recovered among soda bottles, coffee grinds and food wrappers. They include: The sergeant’s certificate of honorable discharge; a detailed memo spelling out his injuries; an Office of the Surgeon General’s physical profile; and a narrative on how the sergeant was injured as his Bradley armored vehicle was lifted off the ground in the 2004 explosion of an IED.
One document is headlined: “This is an important record. Safeguard it.”
In discarding the documents without visible precaution, Tea Party favorite West may have broken several regulations and laws pertaining to military records and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
According to U.S. Army and National Archives websites, the military records of veterans are to be tightly guarded! They are usually not releasable to the public unless the veteran whose records are requested agree to it in writing.
As for the HIPAA act, it prevents anyone from dissiminating health information about any patient without his consent.
Two of West’s staffers were contacted for comment about the paperwork and why West had military records other than his at his house, but they did not acknolewdge my emails.
The policy of West’s campaign is to not cooperate with media that his staff deems to be “unfriendly.”