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US Afghanistan Soldier Charged in Suicide Faces Hearing

By: AP
By: AP
...one of eight soldiers accused of abuse that drove a 19-year-old soldier to suicide is facing a preliminary hearing...

FILE - This undated file photo provided by the U.S. Army shows Pvt. Danny Chen,19, who was killed Monday, Oct. 3, 2011 in Kandahar, Afghanistan. The U.S. Army says eight American soldiers have been charged in connection with the Oct. 3 death of a fellow soldier in southern Afghanistan. In a statement, the military said the eight soldiers from Chen's company faced charges ranging from dereliction of duty, assault, negligent homicide and involuntary manslaughter. Chen was found in a guard tower in Kandahar province with what the Army described at the time as "an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound." He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 21st Infantry Regiment, 1st Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, Fort Wainwright, Alaska. (AP Photo/U.S. Army, File) (AP Photo/U.S. Army, File)

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- The U.S. military says one of eight soldiers accused of abuse that drove a 19-year-old soldier to suicide is facing a preliminary hearing at a base in a southern Afghanistan.

Spc. Ryan J. Offutt faces charges including maltreatment,
involuntary manslaughter and negligent homicide in the death of
Pvt. Danny Chen.

The Chinese-American shot himself in a guardhouse in Afghanistan
in October after what investigators say were weeks of racial slurs
and being forced to work grueling extra details.

Offutt, 32, was charged in December along with seven others.

A military statement says he served 14 months in Iraq before being
deployed to Afghanistan.

The Sunday hearing under Article 32 of the military code will determine whether Offutt faces court martial.


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