Thursday, May 26, 2011

Holmes' 32 in Stryker Brigade Case

AFP reports that Private Andrew Holmes's attorney argued at the Article 32 hearing that his client should not be court-martialed.  Holmes is accused of the premeditated murder of a teenage boy in a poppy field near a small Afghan village in January 2010.  He also stands accused of using hashish and possessing photos of the incident and war trophies, specifically fingers taken from corpses.

Wednesday's hearing opened with testimony from Private Jeremy Morlock, who pleaded guilty last November and is now serving a 24-year sentence as part of a deal which gives him immunity from further prosecution. Morlock said he summoned the Afghan man and then threw a grenade at him while Holmes shot at him. He added that he held no malice towards Holmes, whom he treated like "a little brother." Morlock admitted to a history of alcohol and drug problems as well as a record of petty crime, including an assault on his then-wife.  There was also testimony that Morlock was not a "truthful person and a masterful manipulator."

A recommendation by Investigative Officer Major Michael P. Lyles will likely be announced in the next two months.