4 US soldiers’ pretrial investigation todayBy Pajhwok Reporter Feb 20, 2012 - 15:10
KANDAHAR CITY (PAN): Four US soldiers, charged in connection with last year’s death of an infantryman, are scheduled for an Article 32 hearing on the Kandahar airfield headquarters on Monday, the ISAF regional command (south) said.
An Article 32 Investigation is a thorough and impartial probe into charges and specifications before they may be referred to a general court-martial. The purpose of this pretrial investigation is to inquire into the truth of the matter set forth in the charges.
The process is also aimed to consider the form of the charges and secure information to determine what disposition should be made of the case in the interest of justice and discipline, a statement from ISAF said.
Staff Sgt. Andrew Van Bockel, Sgt. Jeffrey Hurst, Sgt. Adam Holcomb and Spc. Thomas Curtis are charged in connection with the October 31, 2011 death of Pvt. Danny Chen, an infantryman assigned to C Co., 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division at Combat Outpost Palace.
Chen was found in a guard tower with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. The four soldiers are infantrymen assigned to C Co., 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division in Kandahar.
The investigation also serves as a means of pretrial discovery for the accused and defense counsel in copies of the criminal investigation and witness statements are provided and witnesses who testify may be cross-examined, it said.