Thursday, April 30, 2009

Iraq: US soldier charged in fellow soldier's death

BAGHDAD – The U.S. military says an American soldier has been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the shooting death of a fellow soldier in northern Iraq.

The military says Sgt. Miguel A. Vegaquinones also was charged Wednesday with making a false official statement in Pfc. Sean P. McCune's death.

Thursday's announcement says "the apparent cause of death was a negligent discharge from Vegaquinones' weapon" after the men finished guard duty Jan. 11 in Samarra.

Vegaquinones is assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 35th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division. The military says he has temporarily been moved to brigade headquarters near Tikrit for the proceedings.

Involuntary manslaughter carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence.

Courtesy of AP News

It's sad that Negligent Discharges happen, they are a result of poor training, indiscipline and a lackadaisical attitude towards weapons handling. But to charge the guy with manslaughter? Isn't that a little harsh? I'd like to know more details on this one.