Skip to comments.Haditha Article 32: Capt. Randy W. Stone
Posted on 05/04/2007 3:52:05 PM PDT by RedRover
Hearing fact sheet
The accused: Capt. Stone was the staff legal officer for the 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment when the incident occurred. Stone, who completed his officer training course in August 2003, was on his first tour in Iraq at the time of the Haditha incident. He is a 34-year-old Maryland native, currently assigned to legislative affairs duties. Capt. Stone is facing up to two years in prison and dismissal from the service if ordered to trial, convicted and sentenced to the maximum punishment.
Preferred Charges and Specifications:
Charge: Violation of the UCMJ, Article 92
Specification 1 (Violation of a lawful order): wrongfully failed to ensure accurate reporting and a thorough investigation into a possible, suspected, or alleged violation of the law of war by Marines from his Battalion. (Maximum punishment dismissal, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 2 years).
Specification 2 (Dereliction): negligently failed to ensure that this possible, suspected, or alleged violation of the law of war was accurately reported to higher headquarters.
Specification 3 (Dereliction): negligently failed to ensure that a thorough investigation was initiated into this possible, suspected, or alleged violation of the law of war. (Maximum punishment: [willful] Dismissal, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 6 months [through neglect or culpable inefficiency] Dismissal, forfeiture of two-thirds pay per month for 3 months, and confinement for 3 months).
Investigating officer: Maj. Thomas McCann
Convening authority: Lt. Gen. James Mattis, commanding general for the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force and Marine Forces Central Commander for Afghanistan, Iraq and Africa.
Expected duration of the hearing: At least four days.
Unprecedented prosecution: The charges against Capt. Stone represent the first time a legal officer has been accused of a crime arising out of his handling of a battlefield report.
In Capt. Stone's defense: Lead civilian attorney, Charles Gittins, says, "General Huck did not believe there should have been an investigation, nor did the staff judge advocate for the regiment. My client was the lowest-level guy and he reported everything that he had been told. There was no requirement that he should have done more. I don't think the people who made the charging decision thought it through -- it seems like they just threw everything at a dartboard."
Expected witnesses: Maj. Gen. Richard Huck (former commanding general of the 2nd Marine Division based at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, who at the time of the incident, was in charge of troops in Haditha ), "two other Marine officers who were in Iraq when the killings took place" (according to the North County Times), Sgt. Sanick Dela Cruz.
What's crucial: Maj. Gen. Huck's testimony could clear Capt. Stone. (As a side note, it's very rare for a general to testify for either side in a court case. Naturally, the investigating officer will give a great deal of weight to his testimony.)
Also at stake: Three other officers are facing charges similar to those of Capt. Stone: Lt. Col. Jeffrey Chessani, Capt. Lucas McConnell and 1st Lt. Andrew Grayson. The result of Capt. Stone's hearing will impact the other three officers, as well as the three enlisted Marines (Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich andÂ Lance Cpls. Justin Sharratt and Stephen Tatum). All the accused are from Camp Pendleton's 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment.
Information drawn from various articles in the North County Times
This thread is intended to be the main discussion thread during the hearing. This will help keep the facts in one place for easy reference.
Thanks for the thread. This Article 32 hearing is of the utmost importance and will probably set the tone for the other Article 32’s. Please pray that this will be a fair and unbiased hearing. God Bless Our Marines.
Great idea, Red. Got it bookmarked.
Am happy to see Lt Col Pigott has been removed from the hearing and replaced by Major McCann. Hopefully he will be capable of running a fair and unbiased hearing. Pigott seemed at a disadvantage when it comes to fair and unbiased.
Prayers going up for all eight. May all charges be immediately dropped, and each Marine well compensated for this miscarriage of justice; and may they soon be home with their families. I hope their attorneys can take Jack Murtha, and anyone else responsible for this travesty successfully to court.
This guy had no business being in combat anyway. He is a JAG type. This was just a screw up waiting to happen. Next time ensure that the officer in charge is Infantry. They are trained for that. Whoever put this guy in combat should be charged as well. No wonder things went wrong.
Capt. Stone was the staff legal officer, he wasn’t involved in the combat that day in Haditha.
Amen, Mom. This hearing will set the tone for all the others. I pray it’s the beginning of the end of this nightmare.
Bit of a shocker that Pigott got the hook! I’ll try to find some background on Maj. McCann. Wonder if he’s seen combat.
Maybe I am misunderstanding the story. Are you saying he is still getting charged?
I read it again and cannot understand why he is being charged. This is ridiculous. This is going to be a carnival atmosphere.
I live for the day when Murtha is a broken and forgotten man.
Yes it is. It sounds like Pigott might be in a world of hurt for his actions at the other hearing.
I've never heard of Major McCann but I would think he has to be fairer than Pigott, combat or not.
“I pray its the beginning of the end of this nightmare.”
Can’t be too soon!
Thanks for posting charges....
The three enlisted men are charged with murder. The four officers are charged with neglience or actively covering up those murders.
As the battalion legal officer, Capt. Stone is being charged because he failed to instigate an investigation into the incident.
Of course, the prosecution has yet to prove that a massacre even took place. So there may have been nothing to be covered up in the first place. (Yes, this is a little surreal.)
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