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Former GI Pleads Not Guilty in Iraq Case

July 07, 2006|From the Associated Press

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A former Army private charged with raping an Iraqi woman and killing her and her family entered a plea of not guilty through his public defenders Thursday.

Steven D. Green waived a detention hearing and a preliminary hearing, and agreed that his case would be prosecuted in the Western District of Kentucky.

U.S. Magistrate Judge James Moyer set an arraignment date of Aug. 8 in Paducah for Green, who was arrested Friday by FBI agents in Marion, N.C.

Green appeared in baggy shorts and flip-flops, and he was wearing the same Johnny Cash T-shirt he wore to a hearing Monday in Charlotte, N.C.

Green, who served 11 months with the 101st Airborne Division, based at Ft. Campbell, Ky., received an honorable discharge and left the Army in mid-May.

He was discharged because of an "antisocial personality disorder," according to military officials and court documents.

Antisocial personality disorder is defined as chronic behavior that manipulates, exploits or violates the rights of others.

According to a federal affidavit, Green and other soldiers targeted the Iraqi woman after spotting her at a traffic checkpoint.

Green is being tried in federal rather than military court because he no longer is in the Army.

Army Criminal Investigation Command agents have given federal law enforcement officials their evidence against Green.

No one else has been charged in the case.

On Thursday, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. George W. Casey Jr., and U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad said the investigation would be pursued in a "vigorous and open process."

"Coalition forces came to Iraq to protect the rights and freedoms of the Iraqi people, to defend democratic values, and to uphold human dignity. As such, we will face every situation honestly and openly, and we will leave no stone unturned in pursuit of the facts," their statement said.

"We will hold our service members accountable if they are found guilty of misconduct in a court of law."

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki has called for an independent investigation into the attack and a review of the agreement granting U.S. forces immunity from prosecution by Iraqi courts.

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