Investigators Recommend Court Martial For Four Ft. Wainwright Soldiers

Another preliminary hearing has recommended court martial trials for Ft. Wainwright soldiers charged in connection with the death of a fellow Stryker Brigade soldier.

An Article 32 Hearing wrapped up yesterday for Staff Sergeant Andrew VanBockel, Sergeants Jeffrey Hurst and Adam Holcomb and Specialist Thomas Curtis.  They face charges including negligent homicide, dereliction of duty and reckless endangerment related to the October 2011 death of Private Danny Chen in Afghanistan.

Private Chen was found dead of an apparent self inflicted gunshot wound, but his family has said the Army told them he was severely hazed by fellow soldiers.  Four other Stryker soldiers are also facing charges related to Chen’s death.   The Brigade’s regional commander has final say on whether charges are forwarded to court martial. So far, charges against one of the soldiers implicated in Chen’s death, Sergeant Travis Carden, have been forwarded to general court martial.

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