Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Mixed verdict delivered in soldier's suicide case

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — A military jury on Monday found an Army sergeant accused of hazing a private because of his Chinese heritage not guilty of negligent homicide in the death of the private, who killed himself in Afghanistan.

The 10-member jury at Fort Bragg did find Sgt. Adam Holcomb guilty on two lesser charges, maltreatment of a subordinate and assault. Holcomb, from Youngstown, Ohio, faces a maximum of 21/2 years in prison.

Holcomb was the first of eight soldiers to be court-martialed for the alleged racial hazing of Pvt. Danny Chen, who killed himself in October.

Chen, 19, shot himself to death in a guardhouse Oct. 3. He was called names while in training, then was subjected to hazing after he was deployed to Afghanistan, his family has said. On the day of Chen's death, he was forced to crawl about 100 yards across gravel carrying his equipment while his fellow soldiers threw rocks at him, the family said.

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