This is a rush transcript of "Special Report With Bret Baier" from May 6, 2010. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
BRET BAIER, ANCHOR: This is a Fox News alert: U.S. Navy SEAL Matthew McCabe has been found not guilty of assaulting a terror suspect in Iraq. The jury in his court-martial deliberated just over an hour-and-a-half.
Petty Officer Second Class McCabe joins me now, fresh out of a Norfolk, Virginia, courtroom.
Thank you very much for joining us. First, I'll ask you, what is your reaction? What is your feeling?
MATTHEW MCCABE, U.S. NAVY SEAL: I'm — I'm ridiculously happy right now. This is — this is an amazing feeling and I'm glad we can tie it up with me being found not guilty and, you know, the other two guys were found not guilty. So this is amazing. I'm on cloud nine right now.
BAIER: What has this process been like for you? For somebody who can't grasp how tough this might be, to be charged with something this serious, what has it been like for you?
MCCABE: It's been — it's been troubling at times. You know, having your career on the line, and life on the life, is not an easy thing to handle. But with all of the support that we've had, and everyone's been pushing for us, and it's just been great and it's been a lot easier to handle than if we wouldn't have had that.
BAIER: Your service in Iraq is obviously tough duty. When you captured this suspect, Ahmed Abed, in September, can you give us the surrounding of what exactly happened there? We've followed the story through the courtroom, but from your point of view, we haven't heard it.
MCCABE: Well, we were tasked to go get this guy and we ended up going to his residency and capturing him and bringing him back to our base and then turning him over to the Iraqis. So that's basically is the brief snapshot of it.
BAIER: Yes, but you pushed to have this court-martial. Instead of a reprimand, you wanted this trial.
MCCABE: Yes, we did. There is kind of some misconception about — what we did is we denied generals mass, which doesn't necessarily mean that we request court-martial, however, that is the next step if the convening authority does not want to dismiss the charges.
So we ended up coming to court-martial. And that was in the best interest of everybody anyways. And we all got acquitted.
BAIER: What piece of evidence do you think swayed the jury most in this trial, this court-martial, as you move forward?
MCCABE: I don't think it's one single piece of evidence. I think there was numerous —- numerous pieces of evidence in the prosecution case that made the jury decide that all of us were not guilty.
BAIER: Yes. Your defense called an oral surgeon from Baghdad and he said that this Iraqi terror suspect might have bit an ulcer on his lip that created the blood. And defense attorneys were hoping that that validated the position that Al Qaeda had been trained to make it look like they had been assaulted.
Was that a compelling storyline for, did you think, for the jury?
MCCABE: Yes, you know that is, definitely, what they're trained to do. Whether something did happen or not, they are trained to report something because it makes kind of like their lives easier. So I think that helped the jury out a little bit to make the decision.
BAIER: For people at home who were really upset that you had to go through this from the beginning, what do you tell them? There were people out there that said you should never have been brought forward in this way. What do you tell them today?
MCCABE: Well, I tell them — thank them for their support and it's been great, and everything they've done, but really not to worry about it anymore. I mean, we're all acquitted of these charges. We're all going to move on with our careers and put it behind us. It's done and over with. I'm going to try not to think about it ever again and just move on and live a happy life.
BAIER: Well, we wish that for you. Thank you for your service to our country.
MCCABE: Thank you very much.
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