Military Policy and Legislation Considerations for the Investigations of Non Combat Death, Homicide, and Suicide of US Service Members

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Objective: Provide support to families who have lost loved ones to non combat death, homicide, and suicide. Prevent non combat death, homicide and suicide by providing an expedited transfer option to whistleblowers and those who feel like their lives may be in danger.

This is a small sample of the many soldiers that have died of non combat deaths, homicide, and suicide. It was hard for me to choose which ones to feature. Given the amount of families who have questioned a ruling of suicide while their loved one was serving in the US military, it’s fair to say that some suicide rulings should have a second look to determine if a homicide was ruled out. It’s important to note that if the cause of death is determined to be suicide, then the military never has to investigate again.

Brief overview of need for expedited transfers for whistleblowers in general:

John Needham and Adam Winfield had a lot in common: they both claim to have witnessed war crimes, one in Iraq, the other in Afghanistan. They both wanted to report the war crimes but didn’t feel safe doing so. They both admitted to feeling like they were set up to die or participate in the war crimes. The only difference: John’s parents were able to get him out of Iraq after he started deteriorating mentally. Adam’s parents were not able to get him out of Afghanistan and he was charged with war crimes after he was set up to participate. On the Dark Side of Al Doura and the Kill Team Movie are must sees because they show the similarity in the cases and reveal how an expedited transfer option could have helped them & saved innocent civilian lives. I included a history of crime at the bases they were stationed at to demonstrate that the crime simply follows them overseas.

John Needham, Army (2008):
Retired Army Pvt John Needham Beat Girlfriend Jacqwelyn Villagomez to Death, Then Died of Overdose on Painkillers Awaiting Murder Trial
An Inside Look at Toxic Leadership in the US Army: On the Dark Side in Al Doura, Iraq
On the Dark Side in Al Doura, Iraq on YouTube
Violent Crime, Suicide & Non Combat Death at Fort Carson

Adam Winfield, Army (2010):
Army Soldier Adam Winfield Tried to Report War Crimes But Instead was Charged with War Crimes as Part of ‘The Kill Team’
PBS Documentary ‘The Kill Team’ Nominated for an Emmy
The Kill Team on Amazon Prime
Violent Crime, Suicide & Non Combat Death at JBLM

Would the expedited transfer option help prevent suicide or homicide in these cases?

Alyssa Peterson, Army (2003)

There were concerns that Alyssa committed suicide because she didn’t want to participate in war crimes like torture. Could her life have been saved if she felt like she had a way out? Did she commit suicide? Was homicide ruled out?

Gloria Davis, Denise Lannaman, & Marshall Gutierrez, Army (2006)

Reports indicate Gloria Davis, Army (2006) committed suicide hours after she provided names and testimony to CID investigators regarding soldiers involved in a bribery scheme in Kuwait. She was a witness to the crimes and a witness for the prosecution. Did she commit suicide? Was homicide ever considered? How could this have been prevented? She was one of 3 people in the same logistics group in Kuwait tied to the bribery scheme investigation that committed suicide. Both Denise Lannaman, Army (2006) and Lt. Col. Marshall Gutierrez, Army (2006) deaths were ruled suicides by the Army as well. Were any of these cases investigated as homicides? Did anyone question why three soldiers from Kuwait tied to one investigation killed themselves?

Suzanne Swift, Army (2006)

Suzanne refused to redeploy for a third time for fear that she would be raped or assaulted this time. She went AWOL instead & was jailed. Could this have been prevented if she had a way out of Fort Lewis? She hadn’t been raped or assaulted yet. She was trying to prevent it given the isolation in Iraq. Does the expedited transfer apply to sexual harassment situations where the offender(s) are escalating? How could we have prevented this? If you look at the history of violent crime at JBLM and in Iraq, you can clearly see why Suzanne Swift was fearful for her life. She chose life and jail over rape and murder.

Genesia Gresham, Navy (2007)

Genesia and Anamarie Camacho were victims of homicide in Bahrain. Genesia was said to have been in a casual relationship with the shooter at one point. Were there red flags prior to the murder? Was the shooters behavior escalating? Does domestic violence, harassment, and stalking qualify for an expedited transfer? Could this have been prevented if Genesia had a way out when she realized she may have been in danger? The killer was never jail but instead institutionalized for mental health issues.

Jennifer Valdivia, Navy (2007)

Jennifer was at the center of command investigation of abuse of prisoners in Bahrain. It was reported that she did not want to participate in war crimes yet was belittled, harassed, and abused by a supervisor if she didn’t do what he asked. If she had a way out, could this suicide have been prevented? Was it a suicide? Was it ever investigated as a homicide?

Kelsey Anderson, USAF (2011)

The Anderson family reported that Kelsey’s health deteriorated after she learned that she could not transfer or get out of the military while stationed at Andersen Air Force Base in Guam. Why did she want a transfer? Why did she want to get out of the military all of a sudden? Did something happen to make Kelsey feel the need to get out of Guam as quickly as possible? Her death was ruled a suicide. Could this have been prevented if she was allowed to transfer? The Air Force took her gun privileges away shortly after she got to Guam because of mental health concerns. They gave it back to her a month before she died.

Danny Chen, Army (2011)

Danny was being hazed and bullied by fellow soldiers in Afghanistan. Could his death have been prevented if he had a way out of this situation? Does the expedited transfer apply to scenarios where an individual is being hazed, harassed, and physically assaulted? Did Danny fear murder? How could this have been prevented so Danny didn’t feel like suicide was the only way out?

Ciara Durkin, Mass Army National Guard (2007)

Ciara found discrepancies in the finance office in Afghanistan & feared that she made enemies. She asked her family to investigate if anything happened to her while she was overseas. Could we have saved Ciara’s life if once she realized that crimes may have been committed, she could leave and then safely report? Ciara was a witness to crime yet had to remain in the setting. Do expedited transfers apply to those who want to report crimes yet cannot do so safely in an isolated location?

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I researched the non combat deaths of female soldiers in Iraq, Afghanistan and other areas. I was alarmed by what I learned. It appears that close to 30% of the deaths of female soldiers in Iraq alone are from homicide, suicide, or unknown causes. I am working on doing the same research for male soldiers but have been overwhelmed with the number of non combat deaths of male soldiers. I am starting with 2010 to 2016. Then will focus energy on 2001 to 2010.

Non Combat Death of Female Soldiers:
Iraq
Afghanistan
Other Areas

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There are many cold cases in the military. The Army has the most cold cases. This list is a small sample of the cold cases in the military. Each case has the same theme. The families feel like they can’t get cooperation from the military to figure out what happened to their loved one. The families are devastated by the loss and traumatized further by the indifference, lack of support, and bureaucracy. If the homicide occurred on a base, they have nowhere to turn but the military because of federal jurisdiction issues. Most civilian cold case investigators ask for other investigators to take a look at cases to give them a fresh set of eyes. New investigators can add additional expertise to help find answers and give families closure. Two must see documentaries highlighting some of the major issues with investigations in the military are The Tillman Story (Pat Tillman) and The Silent Truth (LaVena Johnson).

Cold Cases:
Gorden Hess, Army (1998)
Col Philip Shue (2003)
Lavena Johnson, Army (2005)
Tina Priest, Army (2006)
Kamisha Block, Army (2007)
Benjamin Griego, Army NG (2007)
Seteria Brown, Army (2008)
Stacy Dryden, USMC (2008)
Blanca Luna, USAF (2008)
Keisha Morgan, Army (2008)
Cherie Morton, Navy (2008)
BG Thomas Tinsley, USAF (2008)
Anton Phillips, Army (2009)
Amy Seyboth-Tirador (2009)
Katherine Morris, Army Spouse (2012)
Sean Wells, Army (2013)
Virginia Caballero, Army (2014)
Devin Schuette, Army (2016)

Cases Solved by NCIS Cold Case Squad:
Lt Verle Hartley, Navy (1982)
Andrew Muns, Navy (1968)

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Other Areas of Concern:
David Dickson, US Army (1984) Tracking criminal behavior world wide
Kathleen Lipscomb, USAF spouse (1986) Jurisdiction Issues
Walter Smith, USMC (2006) Use of PTSD defense/stigma
Maria Lauterbach, USMC (2007) Expedited Transfer Policy
Jennifer Cole, Army (2008) Accountability/Investigations
Holley Wimunc, US Army (2008) Domestic Violence/Military Role
Morganne McBeth, Army (2010) Sentencing/Negligent Homicide
Mikayla Bragg, Army (2011) Mental Health/Suicide/Personnel Records
Kelli Bordeaux, Army (2012) Sex offender registry/Army role
Michelle Miller, Army (2013) Accountability of those in positions of power
Shadow McClaine, Army (2016) DV & attempted murder prior to homicide
Cati Blauvelt, US Army spouse (2016) DV/Accountability/Fugitives
Army Reserve Veteran Micah Johnson Murdered Five Dallas Police Officers (2016)
A List of Soldiers Targeted & Murdered for the SGLI
5 Service Members Currently on Military Death Row at Leavenworth
The US Military Recruited Violent Felons to Support the War Efforts

History of Homicide/Suicide on Military Bases:
Violent Crime, Suicide & Non Combat Death at US Military Bases

Recommendations:

  • Expand expedited transfer policy to include whistleblowers (war crimes, hazing, stalking, sex harassment, witnesses to crimes) in an effort to prevent homicide and suicide
  • Creation of cold case squads in the Army & Air Force to investigate homicide & suicide rulings
  • Centralized location for families to call to initiate an investigation of suicide ruling or cold cases, with mental health component
  • Official way to dispute findings of military investigators/medical examiners, ability to request a second independent investigation

The Feres Doctrine prevents soldiers from suing the Armed Forces for injuries incurred in the line of duty but families can sue the government in an effort to hold them accountable. Although lawyers and lengthy court battles are costly and re-traumatizing for the families. They shouldn’t have to sue the the government to get answers. They shouldn’t have to submit a FOIA request to find out how their loved one passed. Therefore it only seems fair that we give families the answers and support they need when they lose a loved one who is serving in the US military.

We need centralized databases so that records of criminal activity can be more readily tracked to prevent a violent criminal from escalating to homicide. The military is considered one team now and their criminal activity impacts service members in all branches and civilians in the US and other countries. Given the transient population and jurisdiction issues, it only makes sense to utilize the existing FBI national database in an effort to connect crimes committed on bases, overseas, deployed locations, and in the civilian jurisdictions here in the US. The overall goal is to prevent multiple victims and homicide.

The Silent Truth: The Rape, Murder & Military Cover-Up of Army Pfc LaVena Johnson in Iraq

Ninety-four US military women in the military have died in Iraq or during Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). ‘The Silent Truth’ tells the story of one of these women, PFC LaVena Lynn Johnson, who was found dead on Balad Air Force Base in Iraq. The army claimed she shot herself with her own M16 rifle, but forensic evidence, obtained by the Johnson family through the Freedom of Information Act, brings the army’s findings into question. The Army refuses to re-open LaVena Johnson’s case, leaving the family in limbo. ‘The Silent Truth’ follows the Johnson’s pursuit of justice and truth for their daughter. -The Silent Truth

What happened to LaVena Lynn Johnson and so many others speaks to a Pentagon culture which more closely resembles a rogue government–than a legitimate branch serving under civilian control. It is highly telling that this family, along with the Tillman family each had to have a documentary film made JUST TO ALERT THE PUBLIC TO THE TRUTH OF PENTAGON COVER-UPS. I urge everyone to view this important documentary–before the local military recruiter mandated under No Child Left Behind–‘friends’ their child at school. God forbid, they could wind up coming home in a body bag–like LaVena. –Truthout

Learn more:
The Silent Truth on YouTube
The Silent Truth on Amazon Video
Army Pfc LaVena Johnson Died of Non Combat Related Injuries in Iraq, Death Ruled Suicide But Autopsy Report Revealed Rape & Murder (2005)
Non Combat Deaths of Female Soldiers in the US Military (Iraq)
Violent Crime, Suicide & Non Combat Death at Fort Campbell, Kentucky (US Army)
The Silent Truth Documentary aka The LaVena Johnson Murder Cover-Up
What Really Happened to Pat Tillman?
Pat Tillman: The US Army Murder Scandal

Air Force Veteran John Tessier (aka Jack McCullough) Freed from Prison After Maria Ridulph Cold Case Homicide Conviction Overturned with New Evidence (2016)

Maria Ridulph, 7, disappeared on December 3, 1957 in Sycamore, Illinois. She was found stabbed to death a few months later. Air Force veteran John Tessier (aka Jack McCullough) of Seattle, Washington, 17 at the time, was convicted in 2012 of the kidnapping and murder of Maria and sentenced to life in prison. It was the oldest cold case in the country to be solved but soon that victory would be lost and conviction overturned on appeal. A prosecutor found evidence that supported McCullough’s long-held alibi that he had been 40 miles away at the time of the disappearance. As a matter of fact, the former Captain was enlisting in the Air Force and left for active duty service a few days later. A certificate of innocence was issued and Jack McCullough was set free on April 15, 2016. Despite the past sexual abuse of minors allegations, which McCullough doesn’t deny, he wants to clear his name of the homicide. McCullough is suing the State of Illinois for wrongful conviction. The case remains unsolved to this day.

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Maria Ridulph, 7, Illinois

Related Links:
Jack McCullough: The Last Man Standing
48 Hours: Cold as Ice
Jack McCullough Case: A Timeline
Footsteps in the Snow: The Cold Case Murder of Maria Ridulph
Train ticket could solve 50-year Maria Ridulph murder mystery
Maria Ridulph Alleged Killer Arrested: How Cops Finally Found Jack McCullough
Man guilty of murder in 1957
Jack McCullough, 72, convicted in 1957 murder of Maria Ridulph, 7
Former cop convicted in 1957 murder of 7-year-old Illinois girl
McCullough gets life for 1957 killing of 7-year-old
Ex-police officer convicted in murder of 7-year-old Illinois girl ,Maria Ridulph, snatched from a small-town street corner 55 years ago
Oldest U.S. cold case closed in Illinois
The murder that became the oldest solved cold case in America
Illinois: People v. McCullough (2015)
Newly discovered evidence in one of the oldest unsolved crimes in U.S. history to ever make it to trial means a 76-year-old convicted and sentenced to life in the 1957 slaying of a 7-year-old Illinois girl has a chance to go free
Prosecutor moves to dismiss 1957 cold case murder conviction
Police eye new suspect over 1957 murder of seven-year-old girl after receiving an anonymous letter in the mail possibly naming her real killer
Illinois prosecutor: Wrong man convicted of 1957 murder of 7-year-old girl
Judge: I’m not ready to free ’57 cold case convict
Jack McCullough freed after conviction vacated in ’57 Sycamore murder
Prosecutor: Man wrongly convicted of 1957 cold-case murder
Man wrongfully convicted in 1957 cold case murder declared innocent
Schmack: Jack McCullough falsely convicted in 1957 Maria Ridulph murder
Man wrongfully convicted in 1957 cold case killing of Maria Ridulph, 7, ruled innocent
Jack McCullough Free After Judge Orders New Trial In 1957 Murder Of Maria Ridulph
Wrong Man Convicted of 1957 Murder in Illinois, Prosecutor Says
Seattle man wrongly convicted in 1957 child’s killing goes free
Schmack Posits McCullough’s Innocence
The Sad Tale Of Maria Ridulph’s Disappearance And The Trial Of Jack McCullough
The Bizarre Murder Of Maria Ridulph — Still Unsolved!
Police eye new suspect in 1957 abduction, murder of 7-year-old girl
Man wrongfully convicted in coldest murder case: ‘I want my name back’
Maria Ridulph A Tragic Case
BrainScratch: Maria Ridulph

Videos:
McCullough at the Seattle Police Department June 2011
Woman Explains Why She Turned Her Brother in for Murder — Dr. Phil
Sister, Stepdaughter of Convicted Murderer Square Off — Dr. Phil
Cold Case Prosecutor Explains Why Convicted Murderer Gave Him the “Creeps” — Dr. Phil
Dr. Phil Analyzes Convicted Murderer’s ‘Telling’ Body Language
Jack McCullough interview
Jack McCullough questioned at Seattle Police Department
Interview with Jack D. McCullough about the new book, PIGGYBACK
Cold-case conviction overturned
Jack McCullough Exonerated of Murder in 1957 cold case
Jack McCullough freed after conviction for 1957 murder vacated
Wrongfully convicted man walks free in murder cold case
Cold-Case Convict Grateful For New Freedom
Jack McCullough plans to sue for wrongful conviction
Jack McCullough: ‘I was self-raised’
Twists and turns never end in kidnapping case


Retired police officer Jack McCullough was convicted of murder in Illinois more than half a century after the crime. But he was released Friday after a prosecutor found he could not have done it. McCullough says he will sue the state for the suffering five years of imprisonment. “48 Hours” correspondent Erin Moriarty reports.

Our View: ‘Cold Case’ crimes are worth investigators’ effort

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Editor’s Note: The military needs to create cold case squads too.

FayObserver.com: Persistence is not its own reward. Sticking to it can be boring, frustrating or sometimes more like knocking your head against a pile of rocks. But when it pays off, it’s glorious.

That’s why we feel such respect, and even awe, for the men and women who chase “cold cases,” old crimes that resist solving – crimes that a lot of cops would just as soon let slip through the cracks and disappear.

Read more here.

Fort Bragg Military Police Officer Darrell Robinson Found Dead on Army Post, Official Cause of Death Unknown (2014)

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Darrell Robinson, US Army

Related Links:
MP soldier found dead at Fort Bragg
Soldier from San Angelo Found Dead at Fort Bragg
Fort Bragg soldier’s death Sunday under investigation
Bragg officials investigating military police officer’s death
Death Of Soldier With Military Dog Unit Under Investigation
Family mourns loss of soldier at Fort Bragg

Fort Bragg Army Soldier Sean Wells Gunned Down in Home by Two Masked Men in Fayetteville, Family Asks for Help Solving Case (2013)

Sean Wayne Wells, US Army (2013)

Sean Wells, US Army

Army Special Forces soldier Sean Wayne Wells was shot and killed in his home near Fort Bragg, North Carolina on October 7, 2013. According to the Fayetteville Observer, Sean was shot by two masked men who entered his home through an unlocked door. They forced Sean’s wife and child into another room. They left driving a white 2012 Toyota Camry. Investigators believe this murder was premeditated and not random. This homicide is under investigation by the Fayetteville Police Department. The family pleads for your help to find the two men who murdered Sean in cold blood. They believe this case is solvable. Got a tip? Crime Stoppers

Related Links:
Man Fatally Shot Inside Fayetteville Home was a Soldier
Family of Murdered Fort Bragg Soldier Appeals for Answers
Bragg soldier killed in Fayetteville home invasion; two sought
Fort Bragg soldier killed in shooting, two suspects on the run
Two men wanted for killing Fort Bragg soldier
Body of soldier slain in North Carolina arrives at Las Vegas airport
4 y/o son runs for help when Ft. Bragg Soldier killed in home invasion
Special Forces soldier shot, killed in home
Family of slain Fort Bragg soldier asks for help solving case

Spc. Michael Bailey II, US Army, Allegedly Committed Suicide, Family Petitions Military and Killeen Police Department to Investigate Ex-Wife for Murder (2011)

US Army

Spc. Michael Henry Bailey II, US Army, died on December 29, 2011 from injuries sustained from a gunshot wound on December 23, 2011. He was assigned to 4th Squadron, 9th Cavalry Regiment, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, in Fort Hood, Texas. Spc. Bailey deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from May 2011 to November 2011. At the time of the Army press release, the incident was under investigation. According to a family petition, they believe that their was more evidence supporting murder then suicide. They asked the Army and the Killeen Police Department to investigate the circumstances further as they believe that Spc. Bailey’s ex-wife had motive (life insurance) and allege she was at his home on the day of the shooting.

“Everyone who believes in justice. Our son was killed in Killeen Tx December 22, 2010, they did not do any interrogation of the that night to be x wife, who had plenty of motive and who should have been tested for GPR and arrested not only walked but is on the army payroll the rest of her life and collected all of his insurance money for 3 years of cheating on her husband our son and who was on her last day under his roof. Now they call it suicide? They have less evidence of that than there is of murder. This is a tragedy that needs justice!” –Petition for Michael Bailey

Related Links:
Death of a Fort Hood soldier: Spc. Michael Henry Bailey II
‘Black Jack’ troopers mourn loss of Soldier
Justice for Army Spec E4 Michael Henry Bailey
Violent Crime, Suicide, and Non Combat Death at Fort Hood, Texas (US Army)

Army Staff Sgt Amy Tirador Died of a Non Combat Related Incident in Iraq, Army Ruled Suicide But Family Believes Execution Style Murder & Cover-Up (2009)

Honoring SSG Amy Seyboth-Tirador, US Army (2009)

Staff Sgt. Amy Tirador, US Army

Staff Sgt. Amy (Seyboth) Tirador, US Army, died of injuries sustained from a non-combat related incident in Kirkush, Iraq on November 4, 2009. Staff Sgt. Tirador was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom on behalf of the 209th Military Intelligence Company, 1st Squadron, 14th Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division in Fort Lewis, Washington. This was Amy’s third tour of duty in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The Department of Defense announced the circumstances surrounding the incident were under investigation at the time of the press release. Media reports declared that Amy was found by a maintenance worker in the base’s small generator room with a single gunshot wound to the back of the head. The Army pathologist ruled the cause of death as a ‘self inflicted gunshot wound’ but Amy’s mother Colleen Murphy disagreed and vowed to launch a private investigation. The family expressed concerns publicly that this was an execution style murder on a secure base and that she was killed in the generator room to muffle the sounds of the gunshot. Amy’s DNA evidence was found on the 9mm and that of another person. The family shared that the investigation report attempted to lead one to believe that Amy was considered high risk for suicide because of pressures at work as an Arabic translator and a strained marriage. Amy’s husband Michael Tirador was living at the same deployed location in Iraq as Amy at the time of her death. Amy’s mother denied any history of depression or substance abuse and does not believe her daughter committed suicide.

A year after Amy’s death the Army Criminal Investigation Division indicated in media reports that the investigation was not completed and no final rulings had been made. Yet Colleen Murphy shared that she was told the case was officially closed and expressed frustration with the miscommunication she typically experienced with Army bureaucracy. Amy’s mother also indicated that a lot of women in the military who have died have had their deaths falsely ruled as suicides. Colleen learned from other families who have lost their loved ones that they have even exhumed their daughters’ bodies and found that, without a shadow of a doubt, they did not kill themselves. Colleen indicated that she was going to get a second autopsy in light of the Army pathologist’s determination of cause of death. Michael Tirador expressed in interviews that he did not believe that his wife committed suicide and ordered that her body be exhumed for a second autopsy. Michael was of course a person of interest but his DNA did not match the second DNA profile on the gun. Colleen Murphy indicated that despite Michael’s claims that they had a good marriage, Amy wanted to divorce him. Amy’s father Greg Seyboth expressed concern that her work as a interrogator made her a high-profile target. Retired Army Colonel Ann Wright validated Amy’s family when she published an article stating that several female soldier’s deaths have been grossly mislabled by the military yet when faced with further evidence, they refused to change their findings. Colleen Murphy stated that she will never accept that her daughter committed suicide and that the Army is covering up the real reason that she was killed.

Tirador’s “greatness” has been shrouded in military “secrecy”. Her military legacy clouded by the military’s label of a “non-combat” death. An execution-style death in a “secure area” on an American military base in a war zone. –Family of Amy Tirador

Learn more: Who Murdered Staff Sgt. Amy C. Tirador While On An American Base In A Secure Location?

Related Links:
DOD Identifies Army Casualty
Army Staff Sgt. Amy C. Tirador
Staff Sgt. Amy Tirador
Amy C. (Seyboth) Tirador Obituary
Last rites for Colonie soldier
Bike ride for Amy Seyboth-Tirador
Ride to honor Staff Sgt. Amy Seyboth Tirador, 3rd Brigade
Soldiers of Misfortune: Months Before an Army Psychiatrist Went on a Rampage at Fort Hood, a Texas Army Sergeant Allegedly Murdered Five Troops by Non-Hostile Fire in Iraq
Army says it was suicide; family of soldier not so sure
Report says soldier ‘defeated’
Report says soldier ‘defeated’ (SF Gate)
Fort Lewis soldier was murdered, family says
Mother claims coverup in daughter’s death
Family Seeks Answers in Soldier’s Mysterious Death
Fort Lewis Sgt. Amy Tirador May Not Have Shot Herself in Back of the Head After All, Army Says
New info. could turn Colonie soldier’s death into murder case
Honoring Our Fallen Soldiers (New York State Senate Resolution)
“She always smiled:” New documents raise old questions in soldier’s death
Colonie soldier’s mom pledges to investigate death
Military women die in suspicious non-combat events. Families ask: Why?
Staff Sgt. Amy C. Tirador (Memorial Day i-note)
Is There an Army Cover Up of Rape and Murder of Women Soldiers?
Is This How We Treat Our Female Soldiers?
Lavena Johnson, Morganne Mcbeth, Amy Tirador, Where Is The Justice? – Poem by Luke Easter
Non Combat Deaths of Female Soldiers in the US Military (Iraq)
Violent Crime, Suicide & Non Combat Death at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington (US Army)

Lance Cpl Stacy Dryden, US Marine Corps, Died of Injuries Sustained in Non-Hostile Incident in Iraq, Death Ruled Homicide, No Charges Filed (2008)

Honoring Stacy Dryden @USMC (2008)

Lance Cpl. Stacy Dryden, US Marine Corps

Lance Cpl. Stacy Dryden, US Marine Corps, died of injuries sustained in a non-hostile incident in Anbar province, Iraq on October 19, 2008. Lance Cpl. Dryden was supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom on behalf of the 1st Supply Battalion, 1st Marine Logistics Group in Camp Pendleton, California. The Department of Defense announced that the incident was under investigation at the time of the press release. Media reports suggested that Stacy died of a suspected head injury she sustained during a wrestling match with a fellow Marine. In one report, a Marine public affairs officer stated that her manner of death has been ruled a homicide, but no wrongdoing was found and no charges were filed. The family expressed their frustration with the investigation of the murder of Stacy and additionally feel that no one was held accountable in an effort to protect the reputation of the Corps.

“They circle the wagons,” she says about how the military handled Maria’s murder and other female soldier deaths. “They are trying to protect their reputation.” And the military is protecting its reputation while struggling to recruit soldiers for an all-volunteer military. –City Beat

Learn more: The US Military Recruited Violent Felons to Support the War Efforts

Related Links:
DoD Identifies Marine Casualty
Legislation would commemorate Ohio Marine who died in Iraq
My Perspective on “Fragging” and Sexual Violence in the Military
Military Sexual Trauma: Is this how we treat women in the military?
Hiding Military Sexual Trauma
Fallen Angel: A North Canton soldier was found dead in Iraq. How she died depends on whom you ask
Is This How We Treat Our Female Soldiers?
Families seek answers about daughters’ “Non-Combat” deaths
Military rules in Marine’s death
Questions Are Discouraged When Women in Military Die, Pentagon seeks to spin, squelch stories on female fatalities
Marine’s father has questions about her death
Marines Probe Woman’s Death in Iraq
Canton Marine killed in non-combat incident in Iraq
Service members gather to honor fallen
Marine Lance Cpl. Stacy A. Dryden

Cold Case: Army Veteran Kanika Powell Shot Several Times at the Doorway of her Maryland Home, No Known Suspects At This Time (2008)

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Kanika Powell, US Army veteran

Army veteran Kanika Powell, 28, was brutally gunned down outside the door of her home on August 28, 2008 in Prince George’s County, Maryland. Kanika enlisted in the Army in 2000, served in Korea, and then got out of the military and was finally living her dream job in national security. Kanika had a top secret security clearance. Prior to the murder, Kanika had some odd encounters. Two men showed up at her house claiming to be the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). They called her by name and put a fake FBI badge up to her peephole. She did not open the door. She called her work to ask if someone sent them; they had not. The incident frightened Tanika.

Five days later another man showed up at her house, asked for her by name, claimed to have a package for her then left. Twelve hours later someone else showed up again claiming to have a package for her then left. Tanika was fearful for her safety. A few days later Kanika was shot several times. The gunman was standing right outside her door waiting for her. The police report that no hand gun was found and there are no known suspects at this time. The case has turned up few leads. Kanika’s wallet and keys were found next to her body so robbery was ruled out as a motive. The police do not believe her job was the motive. The police and Crime Watch Daily welcome tips.

Related Links:
Prince George’s Killing, Apparently Planned, Opens Host of Mysteries
Unsolved: National security worker gunned down amid mysterious circumstances
Crime Watch Daily: Military Soldier Found Dead at Her Door; Who Killed Her?
Crime Watch Daily: Military Veteran Found Dead at Door; Who Killed Her?

Kanika Powell’s mother, Judy Forrest, is searching for answers. Michelle Sigona reports. -Crime Watch Daily #WeAreWatching