Capt. Jay Heath and Guy Wamack, attorneys for Spc. Charles A. Graner Jr, discuss a defense motion with the judge during an Oct. 22 motions hearing.  Graner faces charges for Abu Ghraib detainee abuse. Capt. Jay Heath and Guy Wamack, attorneys for Spc. Charles A. Graner Jr, discuss a defense motion with the judge during an Oct. 22 motions hearing. Graner faces charges for Abu Ghraib detainee abuse.
Illustration by Marine Cpl. Annette Kyriakides

Soldier sentenced in Abu Ghraib abuse

By Kelli R. Petermeyer

WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Oct. 25, 2004) – Staff Sgt. Ivan L. Frederick II was sentenced Oct. 21 to eight years in prison after pleading guilty on eight specifications involving mistreatment of detainees at Abu Ghraib.

Frederick, a member of the 372nd Military Police Company, will also receive a dishonorable discharge and a reduction in rank to private.

Frederick was found guilty of one specification of conspiracy to maltreat detainees, one specification of dereliction of duty for failure to protect detainees from maltreatment, four specifications of maltreatment of detainees, one specification of assaulting a detainee and one specification of committing an indecent act.

Frederick said he worked in a state prison in Virginia, and they had regulations covering anything from emergencies to abuse. He was put in charge of a section at Abu Ghraib because of his previous experience.

He noticed detainees naked and handcuffed after his first day at Abu Ghraib, Frederick said. He asked for manuals outlining standard operating procedures and Army regulations, he said, but was told they did not exist.

“I didn’t think anybody cared about what we did,” Frederick said.

Frederick received little guidance and no visits from his brigade and battalion commanders, he said.

“I just didn’t have the courage to stop it,” he said. “I knew what was going on was wrong. I knew my duty was to report it, but I chose not to.”

Frederick’s wife, Martha Ann Frederick, testified in the sentencing phase of the trial.

“The things he’s accused of are not in his nature,” Martha said. “He’s very dedicated to his family, his job and to the military. I love him very much.

“Whatever the judge does to him, it not only reflects on him, but on his family. He is a good person, not some rogue Soldier or a bad apple.”

Six other military policemen have been charged along with Frederick, the most senior of the Soldiers charged.

Spc. Jeremy Sivits pleaded guilty to three abuse charges and was sentenced in May to a maximum of one year in prison, a bad conduct discharge and a reduction in rank.

The motions hearing for Cpl. Charles A. Graner Jr. ended Oct. 22. The next court date is set for Dec. 3, and the trial is scheduled to begin Jan. 7 in Baghdad.

The motions hearing for Sgt. Javal Davis began Oct. 22.

Pfc. Lynndie R. England faces 19 charges in the abuse case and is scheduled for a motions hearing in December and trial in January.

(Editor’s note: Information taken from a Coalition Press Information Center release and media pool reports.)

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