Marine Pleads Not Guilty in Death of Iraqi Detainee

San Diego Union-Tribune

CAMP PENDLETON — A Marine accused of killing a captive during the battle of Fallujah more than four years ago pleaded not guilty during his arraignment yesterday at Camp Pendleton.

Sgt. Jermaine Nelson is charged with unpremeditated murder and dereliction of duty stemming from the death on Nov. 9, 2004. Prosecutors said he shot a detainee in a house without justification.

Nelson’s court-martial is set for Jan. 5.

Defense attorneys suggested that their client suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder and sleep deprivation at the time. They’re trying to keep the prosecution from introducing potentially incriminating statements that Nelson gave to investigators. –R.R.

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