The Navy announced on Monday that Rear Adm. David F. Baucom has been removed from his post as the director of strategy and policy at the U.S. Transportation Command for a series of alcohol-fueled shenanigans at an upscale Florida beach resort in April.
It began, as most regrettable nights do, with a combination of wine, whiskey and gin. According to an investigative report by the Naval Inspector General, Baucom says he initially didn't feel a thing. Then, the alcohol hit him "like a ton of bricks" before he fell and he struck his head on a barstool — and wet his pants.
Baucom was attending a dinner for the National Defense Transportation Association’s Transportation Advisory Board. Still, he may have emerged from this embarrassing ordeal with little more than a few bruises, some soiled trousers, and a soul-crushing hangover. But the night was still young.
After a hotel employee carried him to his room, Baucom reportedly fell into a deep slumber. A few hours later, he awoke to use the bathroom again. According to an email he sent a colleague several days later, he hadn't packed his pajamas for the trip because he “did not want to pay the extra $25 for a 2nd bag.”
Big mistake. According to the report, Baucom was en route to the bathroom when he made an unfortunate detour and suddenly found himself standing outside of his hotel room. The door locked behind him. He didn't have a key. In fact, he didn't have anything at all. Because he was naked. Realizing this, Baucom embarked on a desperate mission to find a towel to cover himself with, but was soon spotted by a pair of female guests who reported him to hotel security.
Ultimately, the Navy found Baucom guilty of disorderly conduct and conduct unbecoming an officer. He has since been transferred from his post at U.S. Transportation Command and reassigned to the Pentagon.
In a statement, Baucom said he accepted “full responsibility and accountability for my actions.” He added: “I have served the Navy for more than 34 years and am proud of our institution," and "I deeply regret my actions caused discredit to the Navy I love."
Baucom is the fifth admiral or general to lose their job or get punished by the military for alcohol-related behavior in the past two years. So, hey, just remember: it happens to the best of us.