Skip to comments.DC Sniper Was A Screwball In The Army
Posted on 10/31/2002 10:09:41 AM PST by joesnuffy
D.C. sniper suspect a 'screwball' in Army
October 31, 2002
BY FRANK MAIN CRIME REPORTER
Sniper suspect John Allen Muhammad exploded a grenade in an Army tent during his military service in Saudi Arabia and earlier stole an M-16 rifle on a base in Germany, according to a commanding officer who now lives in north suburban Lincolnshire.
"He was a screwball then and a screwball now," said former Capt. Rick Martin, the executive officer of the 84th Engineer Company in the early 1990s when the alleged incidents occurred. "He was not a good soldier. On a scale of one to 10, he was a three at best."
Martin, a salesman for Explicit Marketing, said the rifle incident occurred in 1990 after the 200-member unit returned from a live-fire exercise in Grafenwohr, Germany, to its base about 15 miles away in Bayreuth.
Martin was responsible for the convoy, and Muhammad--who used the surname Williams at the time--was a sergeant in charge of about three other soldiers in his section.
Muhammad, now 41, and the soldiers under his leadership were assigned to clean the unit's M-16 rifles and other weapons.
One of the weapons disappeared during the cleanup, and commanders were immediately notified, Martin said. The base was locked down and soldiers were interviewed.
"You don't lose a weapon in the Army. ... This was a big deal," Martin said.
Muhammad led a search of a dormitory and located the weapon in exposed insulation on the third floor, Martin said.
Investigators grew suspicious and interviewed Muhammad--whose stuttering grew worse under questioning, Martin said. He admitted he hid the weapon, apparently to get another soldier in trouble, Martin said.
Muhammad faced a hearing, but he was not demoted, Martin said, adding that he was not sure whether any discipline was meted out.
Muhammad was transferred to a support unit about 70 miles away in Nuremberg, where he worked as a truck mechanic, Martin said.
Still, Muhammad had valuable weapons skills and was reassigned to the 84th Engineer Company when it deployed to Saudi Arabia before the Gulf War, Martin said.
The unit was responsible for removing enemy obstacles and clearing mine fields.
Muhammad seemed to struggle with the complexities of land mines, Martin said. He was not trained as a sniper but did receive a Marksmanship Badge with an expert rating in the use of an M-16 rifle.
"He was physically fit, but I don't think he was respected in the unit," Martin said. "He had a chip on his shoulder. People didn't want to have anything to do with the guy."
Martin thinks a grudge that Muhammad held against another soldier led to his pulling the pin on an incendiary grenade in an Army tent near the Iraq border in January 1991.
"Someone yelled, 'Fire!' and his platoon scattered out of the tent," Martin said. No one was injured in the blast.
Martin said investigators found the grenade pin near Muhammad's bunk and determined the grenade exploded on the other side of the tent. They interviewed Muhammad, and he was arrested, Martin said. He said he does not know what happened to Muhammad.
Records show Muhammad entered the Louisiana National Guard in the late 1970s and was disciplined for striking an officer and demoted from sergeant to specialist. He entered the regular Army in 1985 and left active duty in 1994 with an honorable discharge.
3rd gunman in Alabama?
In a new development, police told the Washington Post that ballistics linked the rifle used in the spree to the Alabama killing that led investigators to the suspects.
Since witnesses in that slaying said Muhammad and John Lee Malvo only had a handgun, the rifle revelation suggests a third person could have been involved.
The case is "frustrating," Montgomery, Ala., Police Chief John H. Wilson told the Post. "Just at the time you figure it out, it grows another leg," he said
Here is a lengthy but important document which should be read by all!
JIHAD IN AMERICA:
|To find all articles tagged or indexed using JIHAD IN AMERICA, click below:|
|click here >>>||JIHAD IN AMERICA||<<< click here|
|(To view all FR Bump Lists, click here)|
You don't think the name "Muhammad" says it all to 99% of Americans? I'm just glad the liberal media has stopped using "Williams" to describe the SOB.
"He was a screwball then and a screwball now,"
So was Lee Harvey Oswald in the Marine Corps. The producer of "JAG" was in the Marines with Oswald and made a "made for TV" docudrama about his chance acquaintance with Oswald. The bottom line is; all these psycho's can be seen coming. The behavior of this minority of individuals should be noted by authorities and they should be kept in a state of open surveillance.
I would rather the "crazies" lost their civil rights and gained some mental treatment, before the country looses the 2nd. Amendment to their lunacy.
A turn of speech, or did he have a stuttering problem? This might open up a whole new line of "handicapped" defense!
Seriously, if he did stutter, he would have needed an accomplice to make the phone calls, and that lovely boy, Malvo (if that's his real name) filled the bill nicely.
Wasn't Muhammad court marshaled twice? Steal a gun, pull the pin on a grenade, strike an officer, court marshaled twice; I know nothing about the military, but how do you get an honorable discharge with this record?
Too bad he did not do it the hard way.
Look at the date.
Think about it.
Wouldn't want to hurt his self-esteem now, would we?
< / sarcasm>
The article says he wasn't ever charged for the two incidents, so they wouldn't have been on his record. Something else to think about- you get a discharge every time you re-enlist. In other words, I re-upped once- I now have two honorable discharges. Before the Army signs you to a new contract, they release you totally from your old one. You sign some papers stating that your old contract is fullfilled, you get your honorable discharge and then you sign your re-enlistment papers and take the oath again.
Last point, if a soldier "hand carries" his personal military file to his next unit- all his misconduct will disappear before he reaches his destination. It's.... Common.
You want to take my gun away and give guns to people like him, no wonder we got's a problem.
Thanks for the info. Althought this article does not say he was court marshaled, I have read & heard that many other places. IIRC, once for striking an officer & once for insubordination in failure to carry out an order to police an area.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.