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Accused ex-soldier pleads not guilty

A former Army private charged with raping an Iraqi woman and then killing her and her family entered a plea of not guilty through his public defenders Thursday.
Steven Green
Steven D. Green, 21, is accused of raping and killing a woman and her family execution-style in Iraq.Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Off / AP file
/ Source: The Associated Press

A former Army private charged with raping an Iraqi woman and killing her and her family entered a plea of not guilty through his public defenders Thursday.

Steven D. Green also waived a detention hearing and a preliminary hearing, and agreed that his case would be prosecuted in the Western District of Kentucky.

U.S. Magistrate Judge James Moyer set an arraignment date of Aug. 8 in Paducah for Green, who was arrested Friday by FBI agents in Marion, N.C. Green appeared in baggy shorts and flip-flops, and was wearing the same Johnny Cash T-shirt he wore to a hearing Monday in Charlotte, N.C.

Green answered Moyer’s questions about his inability to pay for an attorney, saying he has about $6,000 in a checking account and owns a 1995 Lincoln Town Car.

“I don’t have anything else,” he told the judge.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian Butler said the case would be presented before a grand jury sometime in mid-July, probably in Paducah. Butler and Assistant U.S. Attorney Marisa Ford declined to comment on where Green would be held before his arraignment.

Green, who served 11 months with the 101st Airborne Division, based at Fort Campbell, Ky., received an honorable discharge and left the army in mid-May. He was discharged because of an “anti-social personality disorder,” according to military officials and court documents.

A psychiatric condition, anti-social personality disorder is defined as chronic behavior that manipulates, exploits or violates the rights of others. Someone with the disorder may break the law repeatedly, lie, get in fights and show a lack of remorse.

Victim allegedly spotted at checkpoint
According to a federal affidavit, Green and other soldiers targeted the Iraqi young woman after spotting her at a traffic checkpoint near Mahmoudiya. Green is being tried in federal rather than military court because he no longer is in the Army.

Army Criminal Investigation Command agents have turned over the evidence that they had obtained against Green to federal law enforcement officials for their use.

Military officials concluded Thursday that since Green had received his final discharge papers, he was no longer under the control of the Army and would not be subject to a court martial.

No other soldiers have been charged yet in the case.

On Thursday, the top U.S. commander in Iraq, Gen. George W. Casey, and U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad, said the investigation would be pursued in a “vigorous and open process.”

“Coalition forces came to Iraq to protect the rights and freedoms of the Iraqi people, to defend democratic values, and to uphold human dignity. As such, we will face every situation honestly and openly, and we will leave no stone unturned in pursuit of the facts,” the statement said.

“We will hold our service members accountable if they are found guilty of misconduct in a court of law,” it added.