AMMAN, Jordan (AP) — A military court is expected to rule Monday in the murder trial of a Jordanian soldier accused of killing three U.S. military trainers in a shooting spree at a Jordanian air base.
The high-profile case had caused some friction between allies Jordan and the United States. Jordan initially suggested the U.S. troops triggered the shooting by disobeying gate procedures, a claim that was disputed by the U.S. and later withdrawn.
The defendant, 1st Sgt. Marik al-Tuwayha, pleaded “not guilty.” If convicted, he faces life in prison. In Jordan, that can mean a 20-year term, with good behavior.
Earlier this year, a Jordanian soldier convicted of killing seven Israeli schoolgirls in a 1997 shooting rampage was released after 20 years.
The U.S. soldiers were killed Nov. 4 when their convoy came under fire at the entrance of an air base in southern Jordan.
The victims were 27-year-old Staff Sgt. Matthew C. Lewellen of Kirksville, Missouri; 30-year-old Staff Sgt. Kevin J. McEnroe of Tucson, Arizona; and 27-year-old Staff Sgt. James F. Moriarty of Kerrville, Texas.
Relatives of the slain U.S. Army Green Berets attended parts of the month-long trial in Jordan’s capital of Amman.
Some of the family members criticized the legal proceedings and potential punishment as inadequate.
“We’ve felt discouraged and disappointed with every way Jordan has handled this case since the moment the bullets were first fired,” Moriarty’s sister, 31-year-old Melissa, said in a…
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