The Marines should be embarrassed that this thug ever wore the uniform. Whoever did this sloppy job of recruiting should be disciplined publicly as a lesson for others who cut corners to get their numbers up.
As a juvenile, Raya was arrested for possession of an explosive device and drug paraphernalia, Heyne said. He said Raya had modified a Piccolo Pete firework and used it to blow up a mailbox.
Raya received a waiver so he could join the Marine Corps, Heyne said.
Johnson said recruits with minor infractions can join the military. He said the rigors of boot camp usually weed out troubled recruits.
Raya gave his commanders no reason to suspect that he was involved in gang activity, Johnson said.
"He would have been bounced out of the Marine Corps in a heartbeat" if that were known, he said.