During the Insurrection, Downs had a quota of drafting five new recruits per month. However, as the war was becoming increasingly unpopular among the population, he had poor results in booking new recruits, having failed to have a single one enlist during August 2524. One day, when arriving at work in his recruitment center, he discovered that his car had been vandalized and had the slogan "Innies Out" spray painted on it. This slogan refers to the Insurrectionists who wanted to be 'out' of the UNSC.
Downs then found then-Staff Sergeant Avery Johnson sitting drunk by the door of the recruiting center. After Johnson told him who he was and that he had gone AWOL, Downs looked over Johnson's service record and then informed him that his request for a transfer had been approved, though Johnson had never made such request. Johnson then fell asleep again, despite Downs' protests. Downs then carried Johnson to his sedan and delivered him to the Great Lakes Spaceport to be shipped off-world, wondering if it would make up for his failure to meet his recruitment quota.
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