American Soldier raped 14 year Iraqi Girl and then killed her and her family
Soldier pleads guilty in Iraq rape and killings
FORT CAMPBELL, Kentucky (AP) -- One of four U.S. soldiers accused of raping and killing a 14-year-old Iraqi girl and killing her family, pleaded guilty Wednesday in a Kentucky military court.
Spc. James P. Barker also agreed to testify against the others charged, a plea deal that helps him avoid the death penalty, his attorney David Sheldon said.
The military judge presiding over the case, Lt. Col. Richard Anderson, asked Barker why he participated in the attack in Mahmoudiya, a village about 20 miles south of Baghdad.
The crime was among the worst in a series of alleged attacks and abuses by military personnel on Iraqi civilians.
"I hated Iraqis, your honor," Barker said in court. "They can smile at you, then shoot you in your face without even thinking about it."
Anderson accepted the plea agreement, which calls for Barker to serve at least life in prison.
Sgt. Paul E. Cortez, 24, and Pfc. Jesse V. Spielman, 22, members of the 101st Airborne Division with Barker, are also charged in the case.
Green was discharged from the Army for a "personality disorder" before the allegations were known. Prosecutors have not announced if they will pursue the death penalty against him.
The group is accused of raping the girl and burning her body to conceal their crimes, then killing the girl's father, mother and six-year-old sister. After entering his plea Wednesday, Barker gave the court a vivid account of the events.
Barker said he and the others were drinking and playing cards while they manned a traffic checkpoint.
Green brought up the idea of raping the girl and killing her family, he said.
"He brought it up to me and asked me what I thought about it. At a couple of points, I told him he was crazy," Barker said.
Barker said he and Green then approached the others with the idea, but there never was a verbal agreement to do it.
"Things just got set in motion, we just started changing (clothes), myself, Cortez and Green," Barker said. "By the time we started changing clothes, it was more or less a nonverbal agreement that we were going to go along with what we were discussing."
Barker said he, Green and Cortez raped the girl, and Green killed the girl, her parents and her sister.
Barker did not name Spielman and Howard as participants in the rape and slayings, though he said they were at the house when the assault occurred and had come knowing what the others intended to do.
Under military law, soldiers who are present when a crime is committed can be charged with that crime even if they did not play an active role.
Cortez, who could face the death penalty if convicted, and Howard watched from the audience as Barker described the assault.
They were accompanied by their defense attorneys and declined to comment.
I'm not young enough to know everything.
Last edited by Kunal; Nov 16th, 2006 at 03:27 PM.