Sat

24

Aug

2013

Soldier sentenced in 16 civilian deaths

Staff Sgt. Robert Bales pleaded guilty in June to more than 30 criminal charges, including 16 premeditated murder counts.NEW: "We didn't get our wish," says an Afghan whose relatives were killed NEW: Another says America has lost credibility, support in Afghanistan Staff Sgt. Robert Baleshot dead 16 Afghan civilians before turning himself in Bales pleaded guilty in June, sparing him the prospect of a death sentence (CNN) -- On Friday, a military jury decided U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales will get life in prison without parole for killing 16 Afghan villagers. Yet victims left behind -- some bearing physical scars, others with emotional ones from seeing their kin indiscriminately, brutally gunned down -- say that, with that sentence, they don't feel they got justice. Friday's decision was not entirely unexpected. In June Bales' pleaded guilty to more than 30 criminal charges, including 16 premeditated murder counts, spared himself from the prospect of a death sentence. He also pleaded guilty to charges related to illicit steroid and alcohol use. But it still remained up to a jury of four officers and two enlisted personnel to decide whether Bales should be eligible for parole.
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