QUANTICO, Va. - The Marine Corps has charged a Marine captain and a noncommissioned officer with military violations in connection with the July 2011 video showing Marine snipers urinating on the corpses of Afghan insurgents.
The 39-second video, which received international condemnation after it surfaced early last year on YouTube, shows four Marines in full combat gear urinating on the bodies of three Afghans. One of the Marines in the video looked down at the bodies and quipped, "Have a good day, buddy."
STORY: Marine pleads guilty to urinating
Capt. James V. Clement and Sgt. Robert W. Richards were charged late last month with violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice for misconduct during operations near Sandala, in the Musa Qala district of Helmand province, Afghanistan, according to a Marine Corps release issued Friday.
Clement, who was then the executive officer of Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marines, out of Camp Lejeune, N.C., has been charged with dereliction of duty, violation of a lawful general order, and conduct unbecoming an officer and gentleman for failing to properly supervise junior Marines, failing to stop the misconduct of junior Marines, failing to report misconduct, and making false statements to a Naval Criminal Investigative Service investigator.
He is now assigned to The Basic School at Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va.
Richards, then a team leader in Kilo Company, is accused of dereliction of duty, violation of a lawful general order, and conduct prejudicial to the good order and discipline of the armed forces.
Richards is accused of taking improper photographs of human casualties, including a video recording of him and other Marines urinating on human casualties; the indiscriminate firing of weapons; failure to properly supervise fellow Marines, and failure to report misconduct, according to the Marine Corps.
Lt. Gen. Richard Mills, commanding general of Marine Corps Combat Development Command, will oversee an Article 32 hearing, a military proceeding similar to a preliminary hearing in civilian law, at Quantico. Mills headed Regional Command Southwest in 2010.
Dates for the hearings have not yet been announced.
Two other Marines have already faced courts martial in the case, and two noncommissioned officers and one staff noncommissioned officer, whom the Marine Corps did not identify, received nonjudicial punishment.
Staff Sgt. Edward W. Deptola pleaded guilty to multiple charges last month, admitting to a judge that he urinated on one of the three corpses and posed in the "trophy photographs." Deptola said an improvised explosive device killed another sergeant in the platoon earlier that day, and the Marines believed the heavily armed Taliban fighters they killed could have been responsible for it.
Under the terms of his pre-trial plea agreement, Deptola to be demoted one rank.
Staff Sgt. Joseph W. Chamblin, who pleaded guilty in December, was reduced in rank to sergeant and fined $500.
The United States now has 66,000 troops in Afghanistan. U.S. and its NATO allies agreed in November 2010 that they would withdraw all their combat troops by the end of 2014.
Contributing: The Associated Press