Enginemen Ryan K. Odom, Nygell T. Sebastien and Christopher Viray, all of Amphibious Construction Battalion 1, which is based in Coronado, California, have found themselves in hot water over the past few months after allegedly abusing SeaWorld’s “Waves of Honor” program.
All three service members conspired and utilized their shipmates’ personal information to acquire free SeaWorld admission passes between February 2018 and April 2018, claimed prosecutors, as cited by the Navy Times. The tickets were sold to civilians (with no relation to the service members) at a later date.
The SeaWorld website notes that active-duty members of the US military and their family members can receive free admission through December 31, 2019 - a substantial discount versus the average ticket price, which can run anywhere between $73.99 and $133.98 for the San Diego park.
The deal can be used once per year and covers the service member and at least three dependants.
According to the charge sheet of Odom, who is set to appear in military court next week, the engineman stands accused of pretending civilians were his dependants or fellow sailors. While the total amount recouped from the scheme was not detailed, the court document claimed that the men raked in at least $500.
The Navy Times reported that Viray was slapped with similar charges during a special court-martial hearing on November 15 and pleaded guilty within a pretrial agreement which dropped the conspiracy charge leveled against him.
Though Viray’s conspiracy charge was dropped, the sailor was ultimately sentenced to 127 days of confinement, as he also admitted to using cocaine and MDMA. He was initially set to receive a bad conduct discharge, but avoided the punitive measure due to his plea deal.
Lastly, Naval Surface Forces spokesman Cmdr. Patrick Evans revealed that Sebastien was disciplined prior to the publication of the Navy Times report, but he did not expound on the details surrounding Sebastien’s punishment.
“Since the cases are ongoing, it would be inappropriate to comment at this time,” he added, speaking of the alleged SeaWorld scheme as a whole.