November 11, 2012

Girl tells of hiding behind dad during massacre

She and other children testify by video from Afghanistan in a hearing for the soldier accused of killing 16 civilians.

The Associated Press

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Staff Sgt. Robert Bales

The Associated Press

His father, Samiullah, was away when the shootings occurred, and testified that by the time he returned the next morning, his two wounded children had been driven to a base for treatment. He found his mother among the four corpses at the compound.

"I just saw her, I cried, and I could not look on her face," he said.

Prosecutors said that in between his attacks, Bales woke a fellow soldier, reported what he'd done and said he was headed out to kill more. The soldier testified that he didn't believe what Bales said, and went back to sleep.

During cross-examination of several witnesses Saturday, Bales' attorney, John Henry Browne, sought to elicit testimony about whether there might have been more than one shooter.

One Army Criminal Investigations Command special agent testified that several months after the massacre, she took a statement from one woman whose husband was killed. The woman reported that there were two soldiers in her room – one took her husband out of the room and shot him, and the other held her back when she tried to follow.

But other eyewitnesses reported that there was just one shooter, and several soldiers have testified that Bales returned to his base at Camp Belambay, just before dawn, alone and covered in blood.

A video taken from a surveillance blimp also captured a sole figure returning to the base.

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