CAMP PENDLETON, California — A Marine sergeant who led a squad that killed 24 unarmed Iraqis will spend no time in confinement.
Military judge Lt. Col. David Jones said he wanted to send Staff Sgt. Frank Wuterich to the brig, but his hands were tied by a plea agreement that prevents any jail time.
Jones was not aware of the stipulation until he opened the plea agreement in court after recommending 90 days confinement.
Wuterich pleaded guilty to negligent dereliction of duty, a charge that carried a maximum sentence of 90 days. But because of the way the military system works, the terms of the deal with prosecutors weren't known to the judge until after he made his sentencing recommendation in court on Tuesday.