Soldier silenced [beaten] for testimony in Afghan killings probe
The Situation Room
By Drew Griffin and Kathleen Johnston, CNN Special Investigations Unit
October 14, 2010 11:32 a.m. EDT
Seattle, Washington (CNN) — First, Justin Stoner blew the whistle on his platoon. Now, the Army apparently wants to silence him.
In photos obtained by CNN, Stoner sports bruises and abrasions on his back, chest and near his neck — the marks of a beating inflicted by fellow soldiers as payback for reporting their rampant hashish use, the Army said.
At the time, those close to the investigation tell CNN, Stoner just wanted the smoking in his tent and around him to stop. So he went outside his group and reported the drug use to his superiors.
But that move, and the subsequent beating he endured for being viewed as a snitch, triggered a wide-ranging criminal investigation that has left some soldiers accused of killing innocent Afghan civilians and others accused of posing in gruesome photos with the dead or keeping body parts as war trophies.
Now the Army is doing everything it can to limit the publicity its own explosive account created.