Despite suspending cell phone service, deployed soldier gets bill

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PHOENIX -- He's supposed to be fighting overseas. Instead, a Valley soldier is spending his time fighting his cell phone company.

So, 3 On Your Side got involved.

His name is Morgan Carothers and before he took off overseas, he took care of a lot of personal business, including suspending his cell phone service. At least, he thought he suspended it.

He's been in the Army for three years," Jennifer Carothers said. "He's a private first class, Pfc. This is his first deployment over in Iraq."

Morgan has been serving in Iraq since April 2008.

"We apologize for any inconvenience this customer experienced but we're pleased that we were able to achieve an outcome that the customer is happy with. It's important to know that Sprint offers a Military Suspend Plan which allows military personnel who are sent overseas on active duty to temporarily suspend their account for 24 months and still keep their phone number and not incur any charges during that time. In addition, Sprint is annually recognized as one of the top military-friendly employers in the U.S. -- something we're very proud of -- and we support our employees who serve in all military branches including the Guard & Reserve." -Dave Mellin, Sprint spokesman

"I enjoy every minute that I get to hear from him, if it's a five-minute call or a couple minutes online talking to him, just knowing he's safe and hearing his voice," Jennifer said.

So when Jennifer found out Morgan was coming home on leave for a couple of weeks in December, she was ecstatic.

She immediately shipped her husband his Sprint cell phone that had been on "military suspension" so as soon as he landed in the United States, he would have a phone.

"At every stop he made back in the U.S. he was able to call and tell me where he was at, how much longer it's going to take and you know, getting me excited to see him when he landed," Jennifer said.

Morgan was only home for a short time.

"He was home for 18 days so he had the phone for 18 days while he was home," she said.

And before departing overseas again, Morgan did what he did before. He called Sprint and put his cell phone on military suspension.

"He called to ask them to put it back on military suspension, no questions asked, everything was supposed to be great," Jennifer said.

Well, that's what they thought. But months later Jennifer says her husband contacted her from Iraq and told her Sprint failed to reinstate his suspension and were still billing him monthly to the tune of almost $900.

"It's insane, you know, $900, that's a lot of money!" Jennifer said.

And Jennifer said when she tried to call Sprint, no one would help

"He's over there fighting for our country and instead of being able to concentrate on fighting for our country, he's fighting for his phone bill, thinking about his phone bill, it's always on his mind," Jennifer said.

Unable to get help, she contacted 3 On Your Side.

We contacted Sprint who immediately put the phone on military suspension and reversed the $900 in fees, which has Jennifer and her husband breathing a sigh of relief.

"I was very excited that 3 On Your side was there for me, fighting for me, got someone from Sprint to look at my case and help me to get a resolution," Jennifer said. "Thank you, 3 On Your Side."

Thanks to Sprint for resolving this issue at our request.

Also, thanks to Morgan for serving our country.