The US soldier accused of killing 16 Afghanistan civilians has not been identified by the military but a senior defense official has identified the man as Staff Sgt. Robert Bales.
Military officials have declined to identify the suspect publicly. The military won’t reveal the identify of the soldier until he is officially charged.
Fox News reports that Bales is a 38-year-old staff sergeant who was on his fourth tour in a war zone. He has two children and a wife. His children are 3 and 4-years-old. Bale has already enlisted the help of attorney, John Henry Browne, who recently represented the “Barefoot Bandit.”
“(His family was) totally shocked… He’s never said anything antagonistic about Muslims. He’s in general very mild-mannered.”
CNN reports that the soldier has been in protective custody in Kuwait and is expected to arrive at a military prison in Fort Leavenworth on Friday evening.
Browne said that his client lost part of his foot and suffered a traumatic brain injury during his first three tours. Bale was also apparently told that he would not be deployed again after his third tour.
“I am confused why they would send him back to Afghanistan. There was no ‘maybe-he-shouldn’t-go’ discussion…. He was told that he was not going to be redeployed. The family was counting on him not being redeployed. I think it would be fair to say he and the family were not happy that he was going back.”
Bale has not been formally charged but CNN reports that charges should come in the next few weeks.