NORFOLK, Va. - A Navy SEAL accused of punching a suspected terrorist in Iraq isnow on trial in military court in Norfolk, Va.
Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew McCabe is facing court-martialat the Norfolk Naval Base. The Navy says the trial could last threedays. Two other SEALs who were charged with failing to protectdetainee Ahmed Hashim Abed were acquitted in military trials lastmonth in Iraq.
Abed is suspected of masterminding the grisly 2004 killings offour American contractors in Fallujah. McCabe is accused ofpunching Abed in the stomach after the Iraqi was captured andbrought to a U.S. military base in September 2009.
In a day filled with motions, the military judge hearing thecase, Capt. Moira Modzelewski, refused a defense motion to dismissthe charges.
Attorneys for McCabe had asked the judge to throw out thecharges, citing a television report that the military official whoordered the court-martial had received pressure from his superiorsnot to dismiss the case.
The defense also questioned the accuracy of the translation ofthe alleged victim's deposition. The government is now searchingfor a new translator.
Finally, the government filed a motion alleging McCabe and SO2Jonathan Keefe showed 'consciousness of guilt' by submittingidentical statements. The judge said she would wait to make adecision on this motion. Keefe was one of the SEALs acquitted ofhis charges last month.
The prosecution of the SEALs has drawn fire from at least 20members of Congress and other Americans who see it as coddlingterrorists. Supporters of McCabe were on hand outside the Navy baseMonday.
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Witnesses tell WAVY.com the attack of a shopper was the cause of a heavy police presence at the Ross department store at Military Circle in Norfolk Wednesday night.
Drivers traveling between Hatteras Island and the mainland were forced to use an emergency ferry Wednesday, following the sudden closure of the Bonner Bridge Tuesday.
A company has been hired to complete the repairs to the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge on the Outer Banks, but how long those repairs will take remains unknown.