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Fort Stewart deserter sentenced to one year in prison
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Cliff Cornell stands outside the gates of Fort Stewart on Feb. 4, 2009. He was just moments from turning himself into Fort Stewart authorities after being AWOL for nearly four years.
The Iraq war resistor, Cliff Cornell, has been sentenced to a year in prison.

Cornell, 28, had a sentencing hearing at 2 p.m., yesterday, at Fort Stewart where he entered a guilty plea for abandoning his military duties at time of war.

In February, Cornell was charged with violating the UCMJ, Article 85, for deserting his unit on Jan. 22, 2005, and not returning until Feb. 4, 2009

Cornell, a Mountain Home, Ark. native, turned himself into Fort Stewart officials after having fled to Canada to avoid what he said was an illegal war.

Cornell's lawyer James Branum said via e-mail yesterday morning that Cornell was in "OK spirits" and "mostly eager to get this over with, but is certainly nervous about going to jail."

Cornell was stationed at Fort Stewart at the time of his desertion. He was a soldier with the 1st Battalion, 39th Artillery Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, and 3rd Infantry Division.

The Courier will have more information as it becomes available.

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