Monday, April 23, 2007


While stationed in Iraq, Carl J. Ware Jr., an airman first class, died from a gunshot wound to the chest. Kyle J. Dalton, a senior airman, pulled the trigger. But first he tapped it.

According to the Virginian-Pilot:
The men were a part of the 886th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron in Iraq, charged with guarding foreign detainees.

Ware, 22, returned from his security detail and walked into his barracks shortly after noon on July 1. Dalton had his 9mm service pistol out and held it at waist level, he testified.

“I was tapping on the trigger,” Dalton told the judge. “It was something the guys had done before...playing with each other.”

Dalton tracked Ware with the gun as the victim crossed the eight-man barracks to his bed, he said. Dalton pulled the slide back and squeezed the trigger, expecting the gun to be empty.
It was not, of course. Ware died within minutes of the July 2006 shooting.

Prosecutors dropped a murder charge; in return, Dalton pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter. He faces a dozen years in prison, reduction in rank (to airman basic) and loss of pay and benefits.

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