The Army Blotter: No parole in soldier slay … Bird-bashing guardsman charged … Desk-bound SGT's death probed



– A former Fort Carson, Colo., soldier convicted for his part in the 2007 shooting death of another soldier was denied parole, according to the slain man’s mother. Kenneth Eastridge will remain behind bars for his role in the slaying of Spc. Kevin Shields, who was shot dead in a drunken brawl in December 2007. Another soldier did the shooting, but Eastridge didn’t report the killing, hid evidence and lied to police. [via Colorado Springs Gazette]

– A Massachusetts guardsman faces trial for animal cruelty after spreading birdseed to lure a flock of pigeons and then running over them with his car. Christopher Berry, 19, of Billerica, Mass., was supposed to be providing Hurricane Irene aid that day, but called out sick. Clumps of feathers on his grille gave him away to police. [via Lowell Sun]

– The Army is probing the shooting death of Staff Sgt. Garrick L. Eppinger Jr., a reservist with the 395th Ordnance Company. A supply specialist for a munitions post at Bagram Airbase, Eppinger was shot dead on the post under mysterious circumstances, his sister said. [via Post-Crescent]


– A Minnesota man accused of causing a four-car accident in 2010 that killed a soldier doesn’t appear to have eased off the gas pedal in the past year. Anthony Lloyd Mancheski, 20, ran over a stop sign, crashed into a stand of trees in Maplewood and charged with suspicion of drunken driving. [via Twin Cities]
– Prosecutors in Portland have dismissed rape and sex abuse charges against one of two JBLM-based soldiers accused in an alleged attack on two teenage girls in a hotel room. Sgt. Timothy J. Hartbeck, 22, of Manchester, Iowa, is off the hook, but Stephan James Bardos, 27, of Morrisville, Pa., remains in custody. [via The Oregonian]

– More veterans are using PTSD as a defense in criminal cases. As awareness of post-traumatic stress disorder grows, veterans’ lawyers are finding juries sympathetic. But the case of Joshua Stepp, a 28-year-old infantryman who killed his infant stepdaughter, is testing how far that defense can go. [via LA Times]

– A man accused of keeping for himself money that he raised for a memorial for a Harrison, Ark. soldier killed in Afghanistan has been sentenced to three years in prison. The father of Army Spc. Clayton McGarragh had alerted authorities that Brian Schooley, 42, was pocketing the money. McGarragh’s guilty plea got him three years and he’s agreed to pay $2,250 to the legit memorial fund. [via Houston Chronicle]

– A Reserve captain who solicited $1.3 million in bribes from contractors in Afghanistan and conspired to ship heroin was sentenced to 10 years. Sidharth Handa, 32, of Charlotte, N.C., was busted in sting in which he told an undercover cop he would funnel a kilo of heroin. [via FBI]

– A construction official that did business at Fort Bliss, Texas, pleaded guilty to soliciting and accepting kickbacks from subcontractors on an Army contract. Juventino Rosas allegedly accepted home improvement work worth $22,000. [via DOJ]

– Twin brothers were partners in crime until they turned on each other. Wael Ali, 23, was extradited Marrietta, Ga., to Columbia, Md. to face first-degree murder charges in the 2007 death of his brother Wasel Ali. Months before Wasel went missing,they were booted from the Army, placed on probation for stealing Army property and suspected of impersonating military police. [via Baltimore Sun]



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