Just in from AP:
A former Wall Street trader who rejoined the Marines after the Sept. 11 attacks will not be tried on murder charges for killing two suspected Iraqi insurgents, a Marine general decided Thursday.
“After careful consideration of the Article 32 Investigative Report and of the autopsies, Maj. Gen. Huck has decided to dismiss all charges,” the statement said.
“While the Article 32 Investigation has been lengthy, the best interests of 2nd Lt. Pantano and the government have been served by this process.” Pantano was charged with the crime Feb. 1. The charges would have carried the death penalty.
“Down at the unit level, there was never a question about Ilario’s conduct and whether or not he did the right thing,” Charles Gittins, Pantano’s civilian lawyer, said. “It was up in the higher echelons. The people removed from combat situations needed to put more trust in their officers rather than assuming they’re guilty.”
“That’s exciting, isn’t it,” said Pantano’s mother, Merry Pantano of New York, who said she hadn’t yet spoken to her son about the decision. “Needless to say, we are quite ecstatic.”
So, what does Lt. Pantano plan to do? Right now, he’s training troops at Camp Lejeune and hopes to return to combat to serve his country.
God bless him.
No update yet, but Lt. Pantano’s family’s website, Defend the Defenders, is here.
Euphoric Reality, which has provided excellent milblogger reporting on the case, will be posting an exclusive interview with Lt. Pantano’s lawyer, Charles Gittins, today. and will also have a blogger exclusive interview with Lt. Pantano himself early next week. They’re asking you to submit questions for the Lt. Pantano interview (send them to kit.jarrell-at-gmail.com).
Lt. Pantano: Will he be cleared?
Lt. Pantano: “He’s a great Marine”
Lt. Pantano’s plight continues
Lt. Pantano update 3/22
Lt. Pantano update 2/25
Ilario Pantano update 2/16
Defend the defenders
September 6, 2013 09:42 AM by Michelle Malkin
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