Army Punishes Three in Drowning of Iraqi

The Army has given non-judicial punishments to three commanders linked to the drowning of an Iraqi civilian, saying they conspired to impede a homicide investigation.

Capt. Matthew Cunningham, Maj. Robert Gwinner and Lt. Col. Nathan Sassaman were punished this spring under Article 15 (search), which does not require a court proceeding or public record, the Army said Tuesday.

The Army would not disclose the punishments, citing privacy laws, but there was no criminal conviction or prison time.

Last week, the military said three other soldiers based at Fort Carson (search) had been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the Jan. 3 drowning of 19-year-old Iraqi detainee Zaidoun Fadel Hassoun in the Tigris River, allegedly for violating a curfew. A fourth soldier is charged with pushing a second man, who survived, into the river.

First Lt. Jack M. Saville, Sgt. 1st Class Tracy E. Perkins, Sgt. Reggie Martinez and Spc. Terry Bowman Jr. face a July 22 hearing. They are from the 3rd Brigade Combat Team based at Fort Carson.

The military says Saville and Perkins conspired with Sassaman, Gwinner and Cunningham to mislead investigators by denying the Iraqis were shoved into the river.