Weekly News via Email
   Set as homepage | Add to favorites | Customer Service | Subscribe Now | Place an Ad | Contact Us | Sitemap Tuesday, 01.16.2018
News Archive
Su Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa
 1  2
 3  4  5  6  7  8  9
 10  11  12  13  14  15  16
 17  18  19  20  21  22  23
 24  25  26  27  28  29
Online Extras
Site Services
Around Bend
Outdoor Fun
Travel Info
Shop Local

Members Of

Poll: Today's Live Poll
Email to a friend | Print this | PDF version | Comments (0 posted) 
  Blogger |   del.icio.us |   digg |   newsvine

Feb 15,2008
Marine is ordered to testify against leader in Iraq killings
by Rick Rogers

CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. - In a surprise turn during the Haditha war-crimes case at Camp Pendleton, a Marine charged for his part in the 2005 killings of 24 Iraqi civilians has been ordered to testify against his squad leader under a grant of immunity.

Lawyers for Lance Cpl. Stephen Tatum said they learned Monday that the Marine Corps was forcing immunity on their client so he would take the stand against Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich.

Any testimony that Tatum gives as part of the immunity grant cannot be used as courtroom evidence against him by the government.

Typically, witnesses who receive immunity have not been charged with a crime or are trying to broker a plea agreement. Tatum has been charged with involuntary manslaughter, aggravated assault and reckless endangerment.

"We were sent a copy of the immunity order that we did not negotiate, and we have no (plea) deal," Jack Zimmermann, Tatum's lead defense attorney, said Wednesday. "They are still going to prosecute him, and we still plan to plead not guilty."

Wuterich and Tatum are part of the Camp Pendleton-based 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment. A roadside bomb struck their unit's convoy Nov. 19, 2005, in Haditha, killing one Marine and wounding two others.

For several hours afterward, Wuterich and some of his Marines killed 19 men, women and children in a few homes with small arms and grenades. They also fatally shot five men who got out of a taxi near the bomb blast.

Wuterich is scheduled for trial next month on charges of voluntary manslaughter, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment, dereliction of duty and obstruction of justice.

Wuterich and Tatum have called the Iraqi civilians' deaths a tragedy caused by legitimate combat between Marines and insurgents. Prosecutors contend that the actions were criminal.

The decisions to court-martial Wuterich and Tatum were made by Lt. Gen. Samuel Helland, commander of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Pendleton. Helland also issued the grant of immunity for Tatum.

The immunity decision was revealed Wednesday during court hearings on the base for Wuterich and Tatum.

During one hearing, Wuterich's lawyers argued before a military judge, Lt. Col. Jeffrey Meeks, that a statement Wuterich gave to an Army investigator should be thrown out. They said the investigator obtained the statement by falsely suggesting that Wuterich was not suspected of any crimes.

Meeks did not rule on the motion, and Wuterich's hearing will continue today (Feb. 14).

During the hearing for Tatum, Zimmermann sought to have another military judge, Lt. Col. Eugene Robinson, bar certain statements from being used during trial. Tatum gave those statements to agents from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service after asking for a lawyer but never getting one.

Matthew Marshall, an NCIS agent, testified that Tatum demanded a lawyer during a May 9, 2006, interview at Camp Pendleton. Marshall said a lawyer was not brought in because Tatum later changed his mind and agreed to speak to the agents without legal representation.

Zimmermann argued that a lawyer should have been called in immediately. He tried to hammer away at the investigative service's practice of not videotaping interviews with suspects.

More motions in the Tatum case will be presented today, including whether a polygraph test is admissible in court.

965 times read

Related news
Marine: Officers didn't look into Haditha killings by Rick Rogers posted on May 11,2007

Marine lieutenant testifies about Haditha deaths by Steve Liewer posted on May 10,2007

Accounts differ on Haditha slayings by Steve Liewer posted on Jun 15,2007

Pretrial hearing begins for Marine commander in Haditha by Rick Rogers - CNS posted on Jun 01,2007

Court upholds Iraq war crimes dismissal by UPI posted on Mar 18,2009

Did you enjoy this article? Rating: 4.89Rating: 4.89Rating: 4.89Rating: 4.89Rating: 4.89 (total 38 votes)

Market Information
Breaking News
Most Popular
Most Commented
Featured Columnist
Horoscope Guide
Aquarius Aquarius Libra Libra
Aries Aries Pisces Pisces
Cancer Cancer Sagittarius Sagittarius
Capricorn Capricorn Scorpio Scorpio
Gemini Gemini Taurus Taurus
Leo Leo Virgo Virgo
Local Attractions
Bend Visitors & Convention Bureau
Bend Visitors & Convention Bureau

Mt. Bachelor Resort
Mt. Bachelor Resort

Les Schwab Ampitheater
Les Schwab Ampitheater

Deschutes County Fairgrounds
Deschutes County

Tower Theatre
Tower Theatre

The High Desert Museum


Deschutes County

  Web    BendWeekly.com
© 2006 Bend Weekly News
A .Com Endeavors, Inc. Company.
All Rights Reserved. Terms under
which this service is provided to you.
Please read our Privacy Policy. Contact us.
Bend Weekly News & Event Guide Online
   Save the Net
External sites open in new window,
not endorsed by BendWeekly.com
Subscribe in NewsGator Online
Add to Google Add to MSN Add to My AOL
What are RSS headlines?