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DEFEND OUR MARINES:

THE FALLUJAH CASE

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"The Defend Our Marines site deserves a freakin' Pulitzer for their tireless work"—Black Five
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Exclusive Look Inside the

Fallujah Investigation

Declassified NCIS Report Raises

More Questions Than It Answers

Read the story here.

 

 

THE FALLUJAH CASE

  • Sgt. Jermaine Nelson pleaded guilty to dereliction of duty. Murder charges were dismissed on September 29, 2009.

  • Sgt. Ryan Weemer was acquitted on all counts on April 9, 2009.

  • Jose Nazario was acquitted on all counts on August 28, 2008 by a civilian jury. (Click at the link for a complete report of the trial.)

Click at the link for a complete report of the Jose Nazario trial.

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Defend Our Marines in the news

As reported by Tony Perry in the Los Angeles Times (pdf), Josh White in the Washington Post (pdf), and others, this website (DefendOurMarines.org) was the first to break the story behind the investigation into an incident arising from combat in Fallujah in 2004.

Nazario case: Can civilian jurors understand combat decisions? , Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times blog, August 18, 2008.

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Documents

Grand Jury Superseding Indictment against Jose Luis Nazario Jr., June 2007

Government's affidavit against Jose Luis Nazario Jr., August 6, 2007.

Sgt Weemer subpoena, July 23, 2008.

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Picture file

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News and anaylsis

Sgt Nelson. Marine suspect may get honorable discharge, NBC San Diego, September 29, 2009.

Sgt Nelson. Last Fallujah trial starts Tuesday, North County Times, September 25, 2009

Closing the book on a dark chapter in Iraq: Upcoming murder trial is next to last in Camp Pendleton cases, Mark Walker, North County Times, September 13, 2009.

Marines, others rally behind sergeant accused in Fallouja killings, Tony Perry, KABC, San Diego, June 28, 2009.

Marine Corps to prosecute third Fallujah suspect, Despite acquittals of two co-defendants, service to try Sgt. Jermaine Nelson for murder, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 24, 2009.

Attorney wants charges dropped against third Fallujah defendant: Citing acquittals, attorney says Marine end prosecution of Sgt Jermaine Nelson, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 10, 2009

Sgt Weemer's court martial, day-by-day:

Sgt Ryan Weemer Court Martial / Day Seven / April 9, Thursday

Marine acquitted on all counts, Jury clears Sgt Ryan Weemer in POW shooting, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 9, 2009.

Sgt Ryan Weemer Court Martial / Day Six / April 8, Wednesday

Jury weighs fate of Marine accused of POW killing, Sgt Ryan Weemer awaits verdict in 2004 Fallujah detaineer slaying, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 8, 2009.

Sgt Ryan Weemer Court Martial / Day Six / April 6, Monday

Weemer testimony ends with appearance by Marine hero, Jurors to hear closing arguments and begin deliberations on Wednesday, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 6, 2009.

Sgt Ryan Weemer Court Martial / Day Four / April 3, Friday

Combat Marine fighting a different battle: Sgt Ryan Weemer is latest Camp Pendleton troop whose fate is in hands of military jury, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 3, 2009.

CAMP PENDLETON ---- Wounded in action and prominently featured in a book for his heroic actions during a grueling 2004 battle for the Iraqi city of Fallujah, Sgt. Ryan Weemer now sits in a Camp Pendleton courtroom fighting a charge he killed an unarmed insurgent.

For the last five days, the 26-year-old Illinois native has sat stoically at the far left end of a defense table as prosecutors have called more than a dozen witnesses in their attempt to convict him of unpremeditated murder and dereliction of duty.

The base courtroom is a far more antiseptic environment than the bloody house-to-house fighting he experienced in Fallujah.

Facing up to life in prison if convicted, Weemer has heard prosecutors describe his acts inside a home the morning of Nov. 9, 2004, as those of a vengeful killer who executed an enemy prisoner in retribution after his best friend, Lance Cpl. Juan Segura, was killed by a sniper earlier that day.

Weemer has pleaded not guilty and he and his attorneys contend the man he killed had lunged for his 9mm pistol. It was an act of self-defense, they say.

The defense also is trying to convince a jury of eight combat-veteran officers that the four suspected insurgents detained and killed by Weemer and other members of a 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment Kilo Company squad were hardened fighters who moments earlier had been firing AK-47s at them.

On Friday, two of the Marines who were inside the home that day testified there was a heavy smell of gunpowder throughout the house.

Shortly before they appeared in court, the military judge presiding over the case, Lt. Col. Thomas Sanzi, announced he was asking the Justice Department to prosecute Weemer's squad leader at Fallujah for refusing to testify.

Former Sgt. Jose L. Nazario Jr. repeatedly declined to answer a prosecutor's questions when called to the stand Thursday. Nazario, who was Weemer's superior in Fallujah, was tried and acquitted last year for his role in the incident.

Nazario's refusal to testify was expected. During his trial, Weemer and a third man charged in the case, Sgt. Jermaine Nelson, defied subpoenas and refused to testify against Nazario. On Friday, Nelson also refused to testify.

Weemer has a Purple Heart after he was shot in the leg three times on Nov. 13, 2004. The firefight is chronicled in "The House from Hell," a chapter in the 2005 book by Bing West, "No True Glory: A Frontline Account of the Battle for Fallujah."

Now, many of the men with Weemer that day and four days earlier are being called as prosecution witnesses.

While his name came to public attention for what happened inside the Hell House, it was the house he entered four days earlier that has come back to haunt him.

It's unlikely that Weemer will testify. He may give what is known as an unsworn statement at the conclusion of the trial, but putting him on the stand would expose him to cross-examination by prosecutors hungry for a conviction. Unsworn statements are not subject to cross-examination.

Weemer's voice has been heard this week. In two tape recordings of interviews with investigators, he calmly detailed his version of the events that led to his being tried for murder for an act that occurred more than four years ago, when he was a corporal.

He tells the investigators the prisoners were killed because of orders from unidentified higher-ups who wanted his squad to keep moving through the city. Nazario ordered the killings, he says, adding that he argued against it with his sergeant.

Prosecutors contended Weemer didn't live up to his training and duty to protect enemy prisoners of war once they had been disarmed.

But on one of the tapes with investigators, Weemer is succinct.

"This was war," he tells the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. "It's not pretty, and I don't deserve to be in trouble because I did what I had to do over there."

His platoon commander at Fallujah, then-Lt. Jesse Grapes, testified Friday that Weemer was one of his best-trained and articulate troops whose loyalty, dedication and obedience to orders were unmatched.

If jurors convict Weemer, who had left the Marine Corps and was working at a Starbucks near St. Louis and taking college courses, they also will decide his punishment.

In other recent cases at Camp Pendleton, juries have been lenient, allowing the accused to walk out of the courtroom with little or no punishment.

In this case, Lt. Gen. Samuel Helland, the man overseeing the trial as the convening authority, drew prospective jurors from bases around the country rather than just those stationed at Camp Pendleton.

And like Weemer, each has experienced war. Seven have served one or more tours in Iraq and another has had two deployments to Afghanistan. Those jurors are expected to hear final arguments and began deliberations on Wednesday.

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Sgt Ryan Weemer Court Martial / Day Three / April 2, Thursday

Squad leader refuses to testify at Marine's murder trial: Jose Nazario Jr won't answer prosecutor's questions about Fallujah killings, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 2, 2009.

CAMP PENDLETON ---- A former Marine who prosecutors say led the slaying of four unarmed Iraqi insurgents refused to testify Thursday evening against one of the men charged in the shootings.

Jose L. Nazario Jr. appeared at the end of a marathon session in the trial of Sgt. Ryan Weemer, who is accused of killing one of the prisoners the men had captured inside a home in the city of Fallujah on Nov. 9, 2004.

"With all due respect, I will not answer any questions," Nazario repeatedly told a prosecutor, Capt. Nick Gannon.

The judge presiding over Weemer's trial, Lt. Col. Thomas Sanzi, reminded the former Marine that he had an immunity grant and a subpoena directing he testify.

"You have to answer," Sanzi told Nazario, who was acquitted last August of two counts of manslaughter for his role in the incident.

When Nazario still refused, the judge and Gannon gave up.

"It's futile, given his recalcitrance," Gannon said.

The jury that acquitted Nazario said it could not decide the propriety of actions occurring on a foreign battlefield.

Nazario was tried as a civilian in U.S. District Court in Riverside because he was out of the Marine Corps and not subject to being recalled to duty.

Weemer has pleaded not guilty to one count of unpremeditated murder and four counts of dereliction of duty for alleged mistreatment of detainees.

During Nazario's trial, Weemer and Sgt. Jermaine Nelson, who is charged with killing the fourth prisoner, also defied subpoenas and refused to testify.

Thursday was punctuated with continuous legal wrangling and multiple interruptions in witness testimony.

Read more at the link.

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Sgt Ryan Weemer Court Martial / Day Two / April 1, Wednesday

Marine says he shouldn't face murder charge: Trial continues for Camp Pendleton troops accused of killing unarmed detainee, Mark Walker, North County Times, April 1, 2009.

CAMP PENDLETON ---- A Marine on trial for killing a suspected insurgent in Iraq told an investigator he shouldn't be prosecuted for an act occurring "in the fog" of battle.

"This was war," Sgt. Ryan Weemer said in a dramatic, taped interview with the investigator that was played in court Wednesday morning. "This is where someone has shot your best friend. It's not pretty, and I don't deserve to be in trouble because I did what I had to do over there."

Weemer also said in the 2006 interview aired on the second day of his trial that he had been ordered to kill the man. In a calm voice, he said everything that happened inside a home in the Iraqi city of Fallujah took place in a flash.

"This happened in a split second in the fog of war," Weemer told Special Agent Mark Fox of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service. "If anyone else had been there, the same thing would have happened. I don't feel I did anything wrong."

Weemer, 26, has pleaded not guilty to charges of unpremeditated murder and failing to follow the military's rules for handling prisoners. Prosecutors allege he shot one of four suspected insurgents captured inside a home in the opening hours of a bloody battle for the city of Fallujah on Nov. 9, 2004.

Another accused, former Marine Sgt. Jose L. Nazario Jr., was acquitted last year for his role in the incident. A third suspect, Sgt. Jermaine Nelson, is slated to go on trial at Camp Pendleton later this spring or summer.

Read more at the link.

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Sgt Ryan Weemer Court Martial / Day One / March 31, Tuesday

Self-defense asserted in Fallujah killing: Prosecutor argues facts point to murder and failure to follow rules of engagement, Mark Walker, North County Times, March 31, 2009.

CAMP PENDLETON ---- Marine Sgt. Ryan Weemer shot a detainee in Iraq in self-defense after the suspected insurgent tried to grab his gun, his attorney told a jury this morning.

The attorney, Paul Hackett, said Weemer was attempting to gain control of a situation his sergeant had let deteriorate during the opening day of a massive battle for the city of Fallujah in 2004.

"This is a tragic story that represents the reality of war," Hackett said during his opening statement to the eight Marine officers who make up the jury.

But prosecutor Capt. Nick Gannon said Weemer was one of three men from Camp Pendleton's 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment who executed four unarmed detainees in the opening hours of the street fighting.

"This is a case about following the rules and doing the right thing at the most important time," Gannon said during his opening statement of the trial expected to last several days.

Weemer, 26, is charged with unpremeditated murder and four counts of dereliction of duty for allegedly failing to adhere to the military's rules for handling detainees. He has pleaded not guilty.

Hackett used much of his opening statement to place the blame for what took place on former Marine Sgt. Jose L. Nazario Jr., who was in charge of the squad that included Weemer, Sgt. Jermaine Nelson and several other Marines.

"Nazario lost control of the situation and conveyed an unlawful order in ordering Marines to shoot insurgents," Hackett told a hushed courtroom as Weemer sat ramrod straight listening to his attorney's presentation.

The case emerged when Weemer, who had left the service, told a Secret Service agent during a job interview that he had shot a detainee in Iraq. In a taped recording of that interview, Weemer tells the agent that he and Nazario debated what to do after reporting they had captured insurgents and being directed by an unnamed superior to "take care of it."

"It's not something you want to do, it just happened," Weemer tells the Secret Service agent.

The agent reported what Weemer said to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, which interviewed him on Nov. 9, 2006, precisely two years after the incident.

During that interview, Weemer said he was frustrated that morning in Fallujah because his best friend had been shot and killed a few hours before his squad captured the insurgents.

"I remember being in a frantic state," he told the Naval Criminal Investigative Service agent, adding he disagreed with Nazario's directive to shoot the detainees.

"I didn't want to do that," he told the agent.

Hackett said Weemer's decision to take a detainee into a separate room was an effort to regain control of the situation.

Weemer told investigators the story of what happened inside the house "because he is an honest guy and he does feel guilty," Hackett said.

But Hackett stressed the man Weemer shot had "lunged" for his gun, resulting in the man being shot in the chest.

Other Marines will testify the three other insurgents were shot in the head, something more consistent with the prosecution's theory that those men were executed, Hackett said.

Nazario, who is expected to testify, was tried as a civilian last year with killing two of the insurgents. The jury that heard his case in federal court in Riverside acquitted him, saying it did not believe it was equipped to second-guess battlefield decisions.

Unlike Weemer, Nazario was not subject to recall into the service to face charges in military court. The third accused man in the case, Jermaine Nelson, faces trial later this year on the same charges as Weemer's.

A few days after the Nov. 9 incident, Weemer was shot three times in the legs as his squad continued to fight to rid Fallujah of insurgents in what was the largest urban combat for U.S. troops since the Vietnam War.

The prosecution is relying on Weemer's statements and those from other troops there that day. Investigators found no bodies and have not been able to name any of the men Weemer says were shot that day.

Investigators also failed to find any forensic evidence, including shell casings, spent bullets or blood, during two examinations of the home.

In order to convict Weemer, who joined the Marine Corps in 2001 shortly after graduating from high school in Oakand, Ill., two-thirds of the jury must agree.

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Fallujah suspect on trial at Pendleton: Sgt Ryan Weemer faces accusation he shot unarmed detainee in 2004, Mark Walker, North County Times, March 27, 2009

After failing to convict the first of three men to face trial in the alleged slaying of four insurgents in Fallujah, Iraq, in 2004, authorities will try again next week when Sgt. Ryan Weemer goes on trial.

Weemer, the man at the center of the case, faces charges of unpremeditated murder and failing to adhere to the military's rules governing the treatment of captured enemy combatants. He has pleaded not guilty.

Weemer was part of a squad from the base's 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment that is alleged to have encountered four suspected insurgents during the search of a home Nov. 9, 2004, the first day of the battle for what was then an insurgent-laden city.

Read the article at the link.

Sgt. Jermaine Nelson. Second Fallujah trial postponed, North County Times, December 30, 2008.

The Monday start of a trial for the second of three men accused of killing four unarmed captives during a 2004 battle in Iraq has been delayed.

Sgt. Jermaine Nelson was scheduled to go on trial in a base courtroom on a charge of unpremeditated murder for allegedly shooting one of the captives. No bodies were ever found in a case built almost exclusively on an admission from one of the defendants.

Nelson also is charged with three counts of dereliction of duty for failing to follow the rules of engagement, the laws of war and the proper handling of detainees.

He has pleaded not guilty.

His trial before a jury of officers and enlisted men was delayed as a result of a ruling Tuesday by the military judge presiding over the trial, Lt. Col. Jeffrey Meeks.

Nelson's attorney Joseph Low was successful in getting Meeks to approve the appointment of an expert witness for the defense who will review forensic data collected by investigators from the home where the slayings are said to have occurred.

Joseph Low. Lawyer off to Iraq for murder case, San Diego Union-Tribune blog, October 7, 2008.

Attorneys: Marine's delayed court-martial is ploy, Chelsea Carter, Associated Press, October 3. 2008.

Sgt Weemer. Trial of Marine accused of killing captive delayed, Rick Rogers, San Diego Union-Tribune, October 3. 2008.

CAMP PENDLETON: A military judge has granted prosecutors a delay in the case of a Marine accused of killing an unarmed captive during a battle in Fallujah, Iraq.
Ryan Weemer, a sergeant based at Camp Pendleton, is charged with murder and dereliction of duty for allegedly shooting to death a detainee in a house Nov. 9, 2004. Another member of his squad faces similar charges.

During a two-day pretrial hearing that concluded Wednesday at Camp Pendleton, the prosecution asked the judge – Lt. Col. Thomas Sanzi – to postpone Weemer's court-martial.

Sanzi agreed to have the trial pushed back to Jan. 12. In the meantime, he will consider the defense team's request to suppress self-incriminating statements that Weemer gave to investigators.

The defense also asked for a jury composed entirely of Marine officers.

Sgt Weemer. Court martial is told of bloody Fallouja battle, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times blog, October 1, 2008.

Marines refuse to testify in hearing, Rick Rogers, San Diego Union-Tribune, October 1, 2008.

MAJOR NEWS! Marines accused in Iraqi slayings refuse to testify against each other, Lawyers say two sergeants will not provide court martial testimony, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, October 1, 2008.

Court-martial in Iraqi detainee killing to begin, Monterey County Herald, February 16, 2008 (pdf)  

EXCLUSIVE! Judge Dismisses Criminal Contempt Against Two Marines Facing Court-Martial for Murder, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, September 25, 2008, 2:50 PM EASTERN

US District Judge Stephen G. Larson has dismissed criminal contempt charges against two Marines who refused to testify against their former squad leader while he was on trial for manslaughter and abetting murder in Riverside, California.

In a brief order he signed Wednesday afternoon Larson dismissed the charges without prejudice against sergeants Ryan Weemer and Jermaine Nelson. They were charged with criminal contempt for refusing to testify against former Sergeant Jose L. Nazario. Read more here.

EXCLUSIVE! Government Drops Contempt Charges Against Sergeants Weemer and Nelson, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, September 23, 2008, 11:40 AM EASTERN

The US Attorney for Central California has dropped criminal contempt charges against two Marine sergeants who refused to testify against their former squad leader last month while he was on trial for executing enemy prisoners in Fallujah. Read more here.

Charges won't be dropped in Fallujah killings (pdf), Mark Walker, North County Times, September 8, 2008

Civil justice for an ex-Marine (pdf), Editorial, Los Angeles Times, September 7, 2008.

The Nazario Trial: A Final View from the Courtroom, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, September 4, 2008.

Acquitted former Marine recalls fear in Fallujah, Prosecutors faced uphill fight in proving 2004 killings, Mark Walker, North County Times, August 31, 2008 (pdf)

Ex-Marine ready to move on after trial, Steve Liewer, San Diego Union-Tribune, August 30, 2008. (pdf)

Jose Nazario trial--part two

Ex-Maine acquitted in Iraqi prisoner deaths (pdf), Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, August 29, 2008.

Acquittal of ex-Marine sparks debate over law, Associated Press, August 29, 2008 (pdf)

Jury acquits former Marine in killing of Iraqis, Associated Press, August 28, 2008 (pdf)

NOT GUILTY ON ALL COUNTS! "Marine Dream team", and justice, prevails in Nazario trial, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 27, 2008.

View from the courtroom: The Nazario trial, day four, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 27, 2008 (pdf)

SoCal jury gets case of ex-Marine in Iraq deaths, Associated Press, August 27, 2008 (pdf).

Civilian jury deliberating fate of former Marine, North County Times, August 27, 2008 (pdf)

View from the courtroom: The Nazario trial, day three, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 26, 2008 (pdf)

Fog of War Clouds  Witnesses' Recollections, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 26, 2008.

Thin Air: Evidence Fails to Materialize in Fallujah Murder Trial, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 26, 2008.

Sgt Ryan Weemer pleads not guilty at arraignment. News stories...

Not-guilty plea entered in Fallujah killings, Mark Walker, North County Times, August 25, 2008.

Marine pleads not guilty to Iraq killing, The Associated Press, August 25, 2008.    

Jose Nazario trial--part one

View from the courtroom: The Nazario trial, day two, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 22, 2008 (pdf).

First report: Marines refuse to testify against former squad leader, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 22, 2008.

Civilian trial for Marine starts, Steven Cuevas, NPR, August 22, 2008.

Marines refuse to testify in detainees killings, Mark Walker, North County Times, August 22, 2008 (pdf)

Testimony Continues in Marine-Iraq Deaths Trial, KESQ (Palm Desert, CA), August 22, 2008 (pdf)

2 Marines refuse to testify in ex-comrade's case, Associated Press, Associated Press, August 22, 2008 (pdf).

2 Marines refusing to testify ordered to court, Associated Press, August 22, 2008 (pdf)

View from the courtroom: The Nazario trial, day one, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 21, 2008 (pdf)

Fallujah murder trial underway, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 21, 2008.

Trial begins for former Marine accused in Iraq killings, Los Angeles Times, August 21, 2008 (pdf).

Federal trial begins for ex-Marine in Fallujah case, San Diego Union Tribune, August 21, 2008 (pdf).

Landmark case against Marine in Iraq detainee death opens, AFP, August 21, 2008 (pdf).  

Trial of former US Marine in Iraqi detainee death underway, AFP, August 19, 2008 (pdf).

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Jose Nazario. Civilian Court Tries Case From the Fog of War, Wall Street Journal, August 19, 2008.

Jose Nazario. Ex-Marine Questions Prosecution in Civilian Court, Associated Press, August 17, 2008 (pdf)

Fed Plot Fizzles Against Marines, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 15, 2008.

Semper Rat: Government coerced Marines to turn snitch, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 14, 2008.

Sgt Weemer. IRAQ: General orders court martial in Fallouja killings, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, August 8, 2008.

Sgt Weemer. Marine ordered to stand trial in Fallujah killing, Associated Press, August 8, 2008.

US Attorney Seeks Marine Corps’ Legal Advice in Prosecution of Nazario, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 7, 2008.

Federal Prosecutors Turn Up Heat in Fallujah Murder Case: Trial Will Be a Marine Reunion, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, July 30, 2008.

Sgt Weemer. Trial recommended in Fallujah killing, Mark Walker, North County Times, July 18, 2008.

Whether or Not I Know for Sure: How NICS Got Its Man in Fallujah Murder Case, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, July 15, 2008.

Nazario Takes Another Bullet in Fallujah Murder Case: He "knowingly used and carried a firearm", Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, July 15, 2008.

Lawyer: Marine tricked in prisoner killing case, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, July 14, 2008.

On the tape, played in a preliminary hearing last week at Camp Pendleton, Nelson said that he, Sgt. Ryan Weemer and Sgt. Jose Nazario fatally shot four prisoners rather than take time to process them according to the laws of war.

But Joseph Low, Nelson's attorney, argued in a Camp Pendleton courtroom Monday that the statements should be ruled inadmissible because they were obtained, in effect, through trickery.

Sgt Nelson. Lawyer says accused Marine may be ailing, North County Times, July 14, 2008.

A Marine sergeant charged with killing a captured and unarmed insurgent during a 2004 battle for the Iraqi city of Fallujah may be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injury, his attorney said Monday.

The attorney, Joseph Low, wants the government to pay for medical specialists to examine Sgt. Jermaine Nelson to determine if he has either or both of those ailments.

Low also asked a military judge during a hearing Monday to approve the testimony of a specialist in "forced and false confessions."

Sgt Weemer. Weak Fallujah Murder Case: Marine Badgered into Admitting Guilt During Interrogation, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, July 12, 2008.

Day Two: Sgt Ryan Weemer Article 32 hearing

Prosecutor presses murder case in Fallujah killing, Sgt Ryan Weemer faces charges of murder, dereliction in detainee slaying, Teri Figueroa, North County Times, July 11, 2008.

Officer considering murder charge for Marine, Allison Hoffman, Associated Press, July 11, 2008.

Marine taped calls in Fallouja killing probe, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, July 11, 2008.

Officer: Marines were told of prisoner rules, Allison Hoffman, Associated Press, July 11, 2008.

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Day One: Sgt Ryan Weemer Article 32 hearing

Marine charged with Iraqi murder heard on tape, Allison Hoffman, Associated Press, July 10, 2008.

Marine's graphic interview describes killing of prisoners in Iraq: Sgt. Jermaine Nelson, in a tape-recorded interview, says he and a fellow sergeant were ordered to kill the prisoners during a sweep through a Fallouja neighborhood in 2004, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, July 10, 2008.

Marines admit they killed prisoners, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, July 10, 2008

'Debate' preceded Fallujah killings, Teri Figueroa, North County Times, July 10, 2008.

Court hears tape of Marine accused of Iraqi murder, Allison Hoffman, Associated Press, July 10, 2008.

Hearing set on Fallujah detainee killings: Sgt. Ryan Weemer due in Camp Pendleton courtroom on Thursday, Mark Walker, North County Times, July 9, 2008.

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Must-read on the Fallujah case: The Judicial Waterboarding of Our Marines, Black Five, July 3, 2008

2 Marines who refused to testify in Fallouja killings are released, Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, July 3, 2008

Fallujah Heroes Will Not Celebrate 4th in Brig, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, July 2, 2008 [updated July 3, 2008]

Marine Released from Civilian Custody in Fallujah Case, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, May 30, 2008.

Trial recommended for Marine charged in Fallujah killing, Officer finds sufficient cause for Sgt. Jermaine Nelson to face court-martial, Mark Walker, North County Times, May 24, 2008.

Marine Jailed by Federal Judge for Refusing to Testify Against Brother Marine, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, May 22, 2008

Executive summary in the case of United States v. Jose Nazario, May 23, 2008

Sgt Jermaine Nelson. Attorney says Marine jailed for refusing to testify, Teri Figueroa, North County Times, May 22, 2008.

DEFEND OUR MARINES EXCLUSIVE: Marine Jailed by Federal Judge for Refusing to Testify Against Brother Marine, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, May 22, 2008

Sgt Jermaine Nelson. Fallujah Marine Given Immunity to Testify Against His Former Squad Leader in Federal Court, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, May 15, 2008.

Jose Nazario. Accused in killing, former Marine speaks, Gidget Fuentes, Marine Corps Times, May 15, 2008.

Jose Nazario. Marine charged in civilian court with voluntary manslaughter at Fallujah seeks dismissal of charges, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, April 21, 2008.

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Sgt Jermaine Nelson Article 32 hearing

Marine says squad leader sought help in killing prisoners, Testimony heard during hearing for Sgt. Jermaine Nelson, Teri Figueroa, North County Times, March 28, 2008.

Hearing in alleged prisoner killings to start Friday, Mark Walker, North County Times, March 26, 2008.

Article 32 hearing will commence on March 28, USMC Iraq Investigations, March 26, 2008. [Story no longer at original url.]

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Ryan Weemer. Marine charged in 2004 insurgent killings, Mark Walker, North County Times, March 18, 2008.

Ryan Weemer. Marine charged with murder in Fallujah death, Chelsea J. Carter, Associated Press, March 18, 2008.

Jose Nazario. Before Haditha: A Kilo 3/1 Marine Faces Criminal-Homicide Charges, Johnny Dwyer, LA Weekly, February 13, 2008.

Warrior on trial: Jose Nazario came home from Iraq a hero for valor in the Battle of Fallujah. Now they're calling some of his actions criminal.

Major news: Sgt. Jermaine Nelson. Marine Corps sergeant charged with detainee murder, Mark Walker, North County Times, December 7, 2007. (Read the charge sheet at the USMC Iraq Investigations site.)

Jose Nazario. First shots returned in the Third Battle of Fallujah, lawyers want decorated Marine out of civilian court, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, November 22, 2007.

Testimony revealed: The case for murder in Fallujah, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, September 25, 2007.

Marines probed in alleged captive deaths, Associated Press, September 29, 2007.

Quote, regarding the Nazario case: McDermott said he knew of only one other veteran, former Army Pvt. Steven D. Green, who is charged in civilian court. Green is accused of raping and murdering a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and killing members of her family. He faces trial in Kentucky, and if convicted could get a death sentence.
If Nazario's case goes to trial, Applegate said he would educate a civilian jury about the realities of combat.
"How do you convey to a jury confusion in the fog of war?" Applegate said. "We are going to have to convey that a guy who might cross the street under a white flag on your block might shoot your best friend on the next block."

Radio operator at Fallujah disputes claim at heart of government's case, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, September 13, 2007.

Sgt. Jermaine Nelson. Charges dropped against Marine...for now?, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, September 12, 2007.

Jose Nazario. Hard fall from hero to alleged felon, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 28, 2007.

Jose Nazario. Police association wants accused former Marine reinstated, North County Times, August 24, 2007.

Sgt. Jermaine A. Nelson. Pendleton Marine charged with murdering detainee, San Diego Union Tribune, August 20, 2007.

Major news: Sgt. Jermaine A. Nelson. Second Marine charged in Fallujah detainee deaths, North County Times, August 20, 2007.

Jose Nazario. The Third Battle of Fallujah: "This case must be pickle loaf", Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 20, 2007.

At least 2 others implicated in case, San Diego Union Tribune, August 17, 2007.

Ex-Marine pleads not guilty in Iraqi's deaths: Former Sgt. Jose Luis Nazario Jr. allegedly killed two unarmed Iraqis captured during battle in Fallouja in 2004, Los Angeles Times, August 17, 2007.

Major news: Jose Nazario. Manslaughter charged in Fallujah killings, North County Times, August 16, 2007.

Jose Nazario. Fallujah Marine faces charges of conspiracy to murder in California Federal District Court, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, August 14, 2007.

Author: Fallujah investigation is flawed, Gidget Fuentes, Marine Corps Times, July 7, 2007.

The commies are loving it: US troops charged with murders, cover-ups in Iraq, World Socialist Web Site, July 7, 2007.

Alleged Slayings In Fallujah Spur Military Inquiry: No Charges Filed in 2004 Incident, Josh White, Washington Post, July 7, 2007.

Ex-Marine at center of Iraq deaths investigation, Kentucky resident involved in '04 Fallujah Fight, Thomas Watkins, Associated Press via the Lexington Herald-Leader, July 7, 2007. [Story no longer at original url.]

Area Marine linked to Iraq killings, St. Louis Post Dispatch, July 6, 2007. [Story no longer at original url.]

Lawyer: Man at center of slaying allegations did nothing wrong, Mark Walker, North County Times, July 6, 2007.

Defend Our Marines in the news: Author knew of Fallujah POW allegations for more than a year, Mark Walker, North County Times, July 6, 2007.

US probes marines over Fallujah 'executions', Reuters, July, 5, 2007. [Story no longer at original url.]

Marines face scrutiny in Iraqi deaths: Investigators are examining allegations that troops wrongfully killed unarmed prisoners in 2004 during the fierce battle for Fallouja. Tony Perry, Los Angeles Times, July 5, 2007. [Discussion thread]

U.S. Marines face new probe over 8 Iraq deaths, NBC: Some soldiers talking; allegations arose following polygraph test, MSNBC, July 5, 2007. [Story no longer at original url.]

Navy Probes Claims Marines Killed Unarmed Iraqi Insurgents in Fallujah, Associated Press, July 5, 2007. [Discussion thread]

Pendleton Marines target of new probe, Personnel accused of killing captives, Rick Rogers, San Diego Union Tribune, July 4, 2007.

NCIS confirms it's investigating slayings; law enforcement agency cites 'credible allegations of wrongdoing', Mark Walker, North County Times, July 2, 2007.

New charges arising from action in Fallujah: Déjà vu all over again, Nathaniel R. Helms, Defend Our Marines, July 2, 2007.

First report: Pendleton Marines investigated in alleged killings, Mark Walker, North County Times, June 29, 2007. [Discussion thread]

Former Marine Sgt. Jose Luis Nazario, right, walks with his attorneys Douglas Applegate, left, and Emery Ledger, center, after making an appearance in federal court in Riverside, Calif., on Aug. 16. Nazario has been charged with voluntary manslaughter in the killings of two captured Iraqi insurgents in Fallujah in 2004.

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