AR 15-6 Investigation (Ramadi Palace, Iraq, July 11-12, 2003) re: Investigation of the Allegations of Misconduct

Army Memo concerning charges against a Captain who's soldiers were accused of several incidents of striking, kicking and threatening detainees with a loaded weapon at Ramadi Palace, Iraq – July 11-12, 2003. They also staged mock executions as interrogation methods, and threatening detainees' families. Investigator finds the Captain guilty of the abuse and of threatening subordinates to not testify against him. This document is part of an investigation in to an incident related to ACLU RDI 1136 through 1171.

Investigative File
Monday, July 21, 2003
Sunday, May 15, 2005


21 July 2003AFZ-R-K-CO
MEMORANDUM FOR: Commander, 3d Armored Cavalry Regiment, Rifles Base, Iraq
THRU: Commander, 3d Squadron, 3d Armored. Cavalry Regiment, FOB Eden, Iraq
iUBJECT: Investigation of the alle ations of misconduct againstmp
urren y
, Commander s at Rifles Base, and is suspended from troop command.A'- -
1. Background:
y lv-
has been the commander of for over twelve months. He
a. (CP —5—
with the Regiment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
dep oyed with
(CPT has been deployed to the. western part of 3d Squadron's area of
. fr 1 _ 5—
operations or the past 60 -dayS.(C111101111troop has-been-operating
( 6 ) x --IA) —5 independently, but a majority of their missions have been platoon-sized missions such 1 (0-.S"--
as presence patrols and traffic control missions. However, ;has been operating from a forward operating base that includes another troop, the Squadron's Executive Officer, and frequent visits by the Squadron Commander
conducted a series of missions and reacted to an
)16)-S— b. Between 9 and 16 July,
improvised explosive device (IED) strike that included the inappropriate treatment of detainees. This inappropriate treatment included both physical and verbal actions taken towards detainees that were either already secured or actually already in a detainment facility. The primary events under investigation are detailed below. 11 Iraqis and,blue Kamaz Trucks detained (on or about 5 July). On approximately 5
u6-.5c. ---July,tPT and his maintenance team detain be ee 1-9 eo le and their (6)-2 /2(- 6) -.2.... vehicles(SS (maintenance team chief,(SSG . . 6
,., 7
OM apparently hits one of the detainees that are a ready cuffed (exhibits I-IV). It is
toVis hi
immused orce irt a detainee duriz ts incident 0ent 16..
go -s----not knowni it "., _ b0- 2-0
se their trof medi SG:1,111111111a t
k4)0...._2_ July both6. SG and1/4CP r . both of them axing hurt han s. According tkSG amhhand injuries are 19 (4) -2. likely the res It of some type of boxing or hitting. Moreover, at the time of his visit to the medic, SSG claimed that his hand injury was the result of a fall on the
6j)-2. way to the latrin (exhibits II-IV). However, in a second questioning SSG admits that the hand injury was the result of hitting a detainee; he admits that he lied to the medic. (exhibit II).
A wheeled vehicle from 4 6 Platoon,41111111) was struck ..b ("‘
d. IED incident (11/12 July).
by an IED on the evening of 11 July 2003. A portion of the troop was dispatched to provide area security at the site of the IED strike; the troop's maintenance section was tasked to provide recovery support. In the process of securing the site, a driver and occupant of an Iraqi fire truck that was in the area was detained for failing to turn off
C' 08229
their vehicle headlights. These two detainees were cuffed (zip strip) and secured facedown on the ground near the troop's on-site C2 element. According to statements (exhibits V-XV) at no point did the detainees offer any type of resistance other than failing to turn their headlights off promptly when they entered the area. However, multiple soldiers report (exhibits V-XV)(CPT)...physicaIly kicking and applying.b/C-5 --
pressure with his boot to the head and neck of one of the detainees; the detainees were cuffed and not resisting during this process. Moreover, soldiers report (exhibits V-
19(0-5— XV)(CPAIIIIII holding a pistol to the head of one of the detainees and threatening
to kill ("I am going to kill you mother fucker") the detainees. After attempting to
extract information from the two detainees they were released that evening.

e. Welder Incident (13 July). Two days after the TED strike, it appears tha(CPT*0. .b60-5--,. r9pLation that could lead to who personally focused his actions on tryin to fin '

was involved with the IED strike. (CPT and tis maintenance section went to /, -.s Ar Rutba and falsely led a local welder to believe that he was needed at L Troop's base camp to make some repairs. The welder was taken 15ds_the city and then cuffed and blindfolded (exhibits XVI-XX). CP! rove the welder out into the 1.4)-1--desert and proceeded to forcefully interrogate him. He had the welder dig a pit; he led the man to believe that he was digging his own grave. Moreover, he had his soldiers , stage an attempt to shoot t in
Ns mock interruption of 4 shooting shots were actually fired by CPT aintenance soldiers. CP 100 b(6)—_S ---verbally threatened to kill the man if he would not provide him with inforMation about violence against coalition forces (exhibits XVI-XX).
White Nissan incident (13 July). In conjunction with the threatening of the welder, a white Nissan that was in the area was apprehended. Eight people were detained in this incident. The driver of the Nissan was separated from the remaining 7 detainees. CPT kicked this driver, and using a captured pistol he fired a round in the .14) vicinity of the driver to scare the remaining seven detainees as to the fate of the driver (exhibits XVI-XX). CPT.111. had the remaining seven detainees released, and r6-) proceeded to threaten the Nissan driver and welder (same location) with the notion that he will give the loaded pistol,(captured) to the two men to "sort it out (exhibits XVI-XX). Eventually CPT releases the welder and keeps the Nissan driver ,4(6)....r" for at least 24 hours. He,uses the Nissan driver to obtain the location of another man's home. CPT ...kind his maintenance team go to a man's home and make similar threats to kill this man (in front of the man's family) if he does not also provide information (exhibits XVI-XX).

..Llijziden date can of be confirmed). At some point between 5 and 14 July CPT an SSG o to the Ar Rutba Police Station and attempt to interrogate

(r) C Z-----0
three men t at are detained there. In this incident, at a minimum, CPT and b4) --.5— 6 —2- (SSG)ffithhitr least one detainee at least two times. Potentially all three detainees
r f 1,,z,„. were hit by both SS9.111111 and CPT111111111111t Exhibits (XVI, XXI, and. XX) lo t 6/hillustrate that when at least one detainee left the interrogation h was severely beaten in the facial area. Moreover, these exhibits report that botl SSG and CPT allebragged about hurting their hands in this incident. -—2

2. Essential facts to consider:
a. CPT consistently uses a baseball ball and his pistol when dealing with both detainees and engaging with the police leadership in Ar Rutbah (exhibits XXIII, XXIV). It is potentially common for CPT... to hold a pistol to the head of detainees as he questions them. OW-
big)-2 b. (SSG only admits to hitting one detainee two times in one event (Jail incident). However, exhibit I illustrates at least one other time tha has hit a detainee that is alread sec e a0 b 6)-
6(6)--S-c. CPT am:16S ietii have pressured soldiers to agree with their actions following the described ev i.e. exhibit XX).
d. CPTiaoand6Shha instructed their soldiers the "have their stories straight" once they realized they were under investigation (exhibit I and interviews with soldiers in L Troop).
ja)--re. CPT illilaclimate of command was one that was very controlling. He held most all decisions and information to himself; even information such as where a platoon was going and what their task was going to be was routinely withheld until the last
_____momentlexhibit XXIV and interviews withplatoon locters oct plAtopn sergeants).6/0'3 d'i'illikerated his platoon leaders and platoon r eaexcessively, even in front of the junior soldiers. Moreover, CPT rg finely would threaten the
troop's leadership with their NCOERs and OERs.
f. Currently some portion of the Troop's NCO channel does not appear to be functioning properly; this is primarily occurring in the maintenance section. Vehicles and barracks have Iraqi weapons, ammunition, and TA50 in them. This equipment could pose a risk to soldiers and could also have intelligence value.
3. Findings:
(6)—ra s-
On more than one occasion CPT h used unnecessary and excesgiajorce in
dealing with restrained and secured detainees. Moreover, CP*L
illahas on several occasions used physical and verbal threats to influence people in Ar Rutbah and the actions. of detainees.
1/4)-Z, b. ,as used excessive force on at least one occasion in relation to a secured
detainee. 0-j--0(4)-2
c. CPT
nd(SSG have both coerced or intimidated subordinates to prevent subordinates from objecting to or testifying about the use of force in relation to detainees. As a result, some soldiers do no feel secure in providing statements in support of these incidents. WO-5-
There is a potential that other soldiers in have also used unnecessary or excessive force with detainees. Some soldiers questioned have alluded to this, but have invoked their r 8 lieu of providing names (e IV...and XXV).

The actions of tdve reduced the ability of 6 fie effective in conducting security and cooperation activities in the Ar Rutbah region in the near term. The leadership in Ar Rutbah tegraded and thieatened by CPT

f The living areas and vehicles of 'clin thitial visual inspection, have weapons, ordinance, and TA50 related items in them that have been potentially confiscated
during detainee security operations. This equipment poses a risk to soldiers and could have intelligence value.
Most significant is that CPT of command has reduced the authority of the-fficers and NCOs in e First Sergeant's ability to impact the Troop's functions and standards was even potentially reduced. It has also, potentially, reduced the initiative of the junior soldiers, and impacted the values and judgment of some of the junior soldiers and NCOs in this exists primarily in the HQ and maintenance platoon. WO-T

The four line platoons have been largely kept out of (potentially intentionally) most of the activities that deal with the unnecessary use of force with detainees. As a result, the four line platoons have been exposed to less and are still functioning well; their soldier's values appear to not have been impacted, and these platoons are cohesive and combat capable.

-4. Recommendations:
a. that he has fostered a command climate that: dOes not suppOit ensiiting the best interest of the soldiers; does not support the adequate.development of the troop's officers and s; not endorse and support the authority of the subordinate leaders in ; an that includes iffuthe-tinnedegSary-tiSe-tifforce-agairiklEtiih-e-S-and the 1 s P9I141440.4 here„in 44
Nsi Cs---) — However, in the interest of rapidly getting this unit nctiOning anf re=`focused on mission requirements, I encourage the chain of commandtoconsider the impacts,,,
riciarlindknfeht rise o orce in raffia-to authority ismthe, treatment of his subordinates.
d. (SSG best determine ac u y gm y o un ecessary-use o orce agams detainees and coercion or intimidation of subordinates. Moreover, this investigation could better determine if and what the level of involvement was from other soldiers
IKI'NCOs in the maintenance platoon. However, based on the nature m f C command, I would recommend SG

C 0 8 2 3 2

5. POC for this investigation is the undersigned at DNVT 539-5303.
Investigating Officer
Attachments: Enclosure 1: Appointment Orders as a 15-6 Investigation Officer Enclosure 2: Exhibits I-XXV

DOD 006862