Father of friendly-fire casualty dissatisfied with Army response

Neal Augenstein, wtop.com

WASHINGTON — The father of an Oakton, Va. Army private who was shot by his own lieutenant and left to die in Iraq says he’s dissatisfied with his meeting with Army Secretary John McHugh.

Pfc. David Sharrett II died in 2008. While the Army said Sharrett died in a friendly-fire incident, the military didn’t disclose Sharrett had been shot by 1st Lt. Tim Hanson, or that Hanson had fled in a helicopter.

Details of Hanson’s shooting Sharrett were finally revealed in 2011, after Sharrett Sr., with the assistance of former New York Daily News reporter James Gordon Meek, pursued accountability.

After the 2011 third Army investigation, in which Hanson was criticized, Sharrett was promised a meeting with Army Secretary John McHugh, which took place Thursday.

“I had presented Secretary McHugh with a detailed list of questions I felt had been left unanswered,” Sharrett tells WTOP.

Sharrett says the Army has never disclosed measures taken against Hanson or his immediate superiors.

“I was anticipating there would be some kind of response, even an acknowledgement of the questions, but there wasn’t even an acknowledgement that the questions existed,” Sharrett says.

After Sharrett, his wife, and youngest son met with McHugh Thursday, he now believes Hanson’s superiors, Maj. Michael Loveall and Lt. Col. Robert McCarthy will never be disciplined.

“The men who chose to ignore what Lt. Hanson did, are not going to be held accountable, and that to me is utterly unacceptable and reprehensible,” Sharrett says.

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)

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