Is There A Problem, Officer? Soldier Takes Armored Vehicle For Joyride in Virginia


De918OaXkAA5VlrLieutenant Joshua Philip Yabut, 29, apparently thinks a luxury SUV or a corvette is not grand enough for grand theft auto.  Instead, he went with the M577 armored command vehicle, which he stole from Fort Pickett, a Virginia Army National Guard facility. He then took police on a 60-mile chase. Yahut previously sought to run against Sen. Tim Kaine (D., Va.) but failed to file the proper forms.


During the chase, Yabut was on social media posting his progress and bizarre comments.  Virginia State Police arrested him for driving under the influence of drugs and added charges for eluding police and unauthorized use of a vehicle.  As felonies, that could make this a costly joyride.

Yahut is presently the commander of the Headquarters Company of the 276th Engineer Battalion, a Virginia Army National Guard Unit.  He has ten years of service including a stint in Afghanistan.  The M577 had no weaponry.



35 thoughts on “Is There A Problem, Officer? Soldier Takes Armored Vehicle For Joyride in Virginia”

  1. Can’t compare to a guy in San Diego in 1995 who stole an actual tank, M60A3 Patton, and ran over a bunch of cars. Went onto a freeway, got stranded on a concrete barrier and was shot dead through the top hatch by a cop. See here for full story.

      1. Westside like Tupac.

        Wu Tang Clan was into carjacking, so maybe his fall from grace was an homage to glorified self destructive behavior.

  2. CV Brown – I was looking at one of those B-52Gs and thinking, wouldn’t that be fun to steal. 😉

    1. Why were there so many police units chasing the AV? Why not just wait for the AV to stop? Well, I guess the police sometimes want to expose the public to danger while trying to shield the public from danger.

      1. Steve Brown – wouldn’t you want to be one of the guys chasing it and having that story to tell your kids and grandkids? 😉

        1. Paul C Schulte: Or telling parents that my police unit struck their child while I was chasing an AV! But I guess you are right– some officers ( and I hope very, very few) just want a good chase and a good story, no matter the serious risk to the citizens to get that story.

          1. Steve Brown – you know, deep down, in your little boy heart you wish you were driving that. 😉

  3. I would also expect a search warrant to be issued for commander Joshua Yabut’s residence & vehicle, since drugs were involved. Who knows what else Joshua was into?

    Example: May 24, 2018

    Air Force Uncovered LSD Use Among Airmen Guarding Nuclear Missiles

    More than a dozen U.S. Air Force airmen were linked to a drug ring at a base that controls America’s nuclear missiles and have faced disciplinary actions – including court martial, according to an investigation.
    Nearly half of the airmen were convicted of using or distributing LSD — which the Pentagon has stopped screening for in drug tests. Citing records obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, the news service reports that the drug ring operated at F.E. Warren Air Force Base, just outside of Cheyenne, Wyo.

  4. I don’t know much about the National Guard; my impression is that standards are fairly lax. It was the PA Army NG that produced the clowns we all saw in those Abu Graib photos. A complete lack of military discipline. I don’t know what the hand signal he’s flashing represents, but if it’s some sort of gang sign, and he’s in uniform and an officer, he should have been removed. In any case, he’s toast. The bad publicity will force Command to finally deal with him. And, BTW, I’m not picking on the NG. An all-volunteer military means they are forced to deal with misfits who shouldn’t be in the service. I read the book “Private” about Bradley/Chelsea Manning. When he was in the Army he actually physically struck his female CO, and all he got was being forced to work on weekends, instead of a stint in the brig and bad conduct discharge. The book reported that because Manning had some native intelligence and computer skills, the Army was willing to look the other way on a person who had obvious psychological problems, because of their inability to recruit and retain people with those skills. Thus the Army tolerated someone who would have been fired from a civilian government job, and the rest is history.

  5. This D-bag is an officer? SMH! What kind of “military” do we have now? Will he get a much needed stint in Ft. Leavenworth? I doubt it.

    1. I was an officer in the Army, long ago. You might expect this kind of behavior every so often from “one of the troopers,” but for a commanding officer to do this is inexcusable. The PA NG must really be hard up for officers.

      1. Jay S – never forget John McCain got through Annapolis and flight school before he tried to sink a US carrier.

          1. Jay S – McCain was the goat of his Annapolis class so he could have done it on purpose. Hell, I don’t know and he is incapable of telling the truth.

  6. Article 121, UCMJ Larceny

    The bench book standard jury instructions are:

    3-46-1: Larceny.

    3-46-2: Wrongful appropriation.

    The maximum punishment for larceny of military property of a value of $500.00 or less is a bad-conduct discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 1 year. Of a value more than $500.00, the maximum punishment is dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 10 years.

    Article 112a, UCMJ Drug Use or Possession

    Controlled substances include any substance which is included in Schedules I through V established by the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 (21 U.S.C. 812). Common examples include: amphetamine, cocaine, ecstasy/MDMA, heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), marijuana, methamphetamine, and opium.

    1. The challenge is the UCMJ does not apply here. The laws of Virginia will apply here because this is the National Guard. The UCMJ only applies to the National Guard when they are activated pursuant to title 10

      1. The commander of HQ 276th Engineer Battalion is going to be torn apart by Virginia prosecutors & military CID. The JAG officers do have input, since the episode started on a Virginia Army National Guard Base. Signs are posted everywhere. “Federal government property”.

  7. A little Roxette for Private Yabut

    I guess this is one reason we Generation Xers are more disengaged from politics, as many have observed. During that time we just cared about life and having fun without the immolating one’s self in political nonsense and BS clogging people’s minds these days.

    Back in my day we had to actually use a thing called a guitar and a distortion box to jam music, not some smart phone app any fool can play–you darned kids! (Shaking my cane over my head and hollering)

  8. Most professional newsreaders ever.

    “… the bubbleheaded bleach blonde comes on at 5…”

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