A pretrial hearing is scheduled to begin Monday morning for the Washington soldier charged with massacring 16 Afghan civilians in March. Army prosecutors at Joint Base Lewis-McChord will make the case that Staff Sgt. Robert Bales should face a full court martial.
Sgt. Bales is a 39-year-old married father of two. He’s accused of entering two Afghan villages on the night of March 11 and murdering nine children, three women and four men –- then burning some of the bodies. Bales was on his fourth combat deployment at the time of killings.
The US Department of Defense issued a news release Monday afternoon about the death of Army Specialist Brittany Gordon. Gordon was assigned to the 572nd Military Intelligence Company, 2nd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
The DoD says 24-year-old Gordon died from injuries caused by an improvised explosive device. Now multiple news reports say Gordon’s death may be the latest in a series of so-called insider attacks in Afghanistan.
The Army sergeant charged with killing 16 Afghan civilians earlier this year has arrived back in Washington. That confirmation came late Monday from an official at Joint Base Lewis McChord.
Sgt. Robert Bales has been held at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas since March when he was accused of the murders and other crimes. His attorney, Emma Scanlan, calls her client’s return home to Washington “incredibly significant.”