FORT BRAGG, N.C. (AP) — U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl made his first appearance before a military judge to face charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy.
Bergdahl was arraigned Tuesday during a short hearing. He deferred entering a plea and did not decide whether he wants to face a court-martial with a jury or one with just a judge.
Bergdahl answered “yes” and “no” to questions about whether he understood his rights and the court proceedings. He wore an Army dress uniform with a dark blue jacket and pants and had closely cropped hair. He mostly sat still in his chair and walked with his head down as he left the courtroom.
The arraignment was held at Fort Bragg. If convicted at a general court-martial, Bergdahl could get life in prison on the misbehavior charge and up to five years for desertion.
Bergdahl, 29, of Hailey, Idaho, walked off his post in eastern Afghanistan’s Paktika province on June 30, 2009. He was released in late May 2014 as part of a prisoner swap, in exchange for five detainees in Guantanamo Bay.