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Are there any new developments with the Haditha killings?

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Smallpotatoes, Jul 12, 2007.

  1. Smallpotatoes

    Smallpotatoes Well-Known Member

    For the last few weeks I've heard something on the radio about new information that would clear the Marines who were accused of the killings.
    I've also heard some people compare the case to the Duke lacrosse team rape case.
    Does anybody have any thoughts about this?
  2. deskslave

    deskslave Active Member

    Sorry for the cut-and-paste, but I don't feel like trying to find it anywhere else. From the NYT wire:

    A Marine lawyer investigating evidence against an infantryman accused of murdering three Iraqis in Haditha in 2005 has recommended dismissing all charges, citing a lack of evidence to show any wrongdoing.
    In his 18-page report, the investigator said that the preliminary case presented by military prosecutors against the infantryman, Lance Cpl. Justin L. Sharratt, was "unsupported and incredible," and that Sharratt had killed the three men in a darkened bedroom of a home in response to a perceived threat "in accord with the rules of engagement and use of force."
    The report by the Marine investigator, Lt. Col. Paul J. Ware, has been sent to the commanding general of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, James T. Mattis, who will make the final decision as to whether to allow the case to proceed from its initial stages to a full court-martial. It is unlikely, military and civilian lawyers said, that Mattis will seek grounds to diverge from Ware's recommendation.
    Sharratt is one of three enlisted members of Company K, 3rd Battalion, 1st Marines, who were charged with murder in connection with actions taken in the hours after an insurgent bomb killed one Marine as a convoy drove through Haditha on Nov. 19, 2005.
    Two other Marines, Staff Sgt. Frank D. Wuterich and Lance Cpl. Stephen Tatum, also face murder charges in connection with the deaths of 21 other Iraqis who the military's prosecutors said were civilians. Hearings to examine the charges against each of those Marines are scheduled to begin later this summer.
    In his report, dated July 6, Ware said the prosecution's case against Sharratt relied on flimsy evidence: contradictory accounts from witnesses among Haditha residents, inconclusive forensic analyses, and sworn written statements by low-ranking enlisted men that were actually typed up, he said, by Naval Criminal Investigative Service agents who he contended routinely add phrases that bolster prosecution arguments.
    Ware also criticized the prosecutors for assigning greater credibility to the Iraqis' account of the killings than to Sharratt and other Marines who fought in Haditha that day, and suggested that the government's pursuit of murder charges with such weak evidence risked undermining Americans' support for the war.
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