Jurors in the court-martial of 27-year-old Staff Sgt. Andrew Van Vockel found him guilty of hazing, as well as dereliction of duty and maltreatment of a subordinate. He was the so-called "ringleader" in the abuse, which included racist mocking and throwing rocks at Chen during training.
Van Bockel testified that his treatment of Chen was "corrective training." The rest of us prefer to call it torture.
The 27-year-old soldier was convicted Tuesday of dereliction of duty and maltreatment in the hazing of Chen, a lower East Side resident, who was so sadistically treated by Van Bockel and fellow soldiers that he took his own life in Afghanistan in October, 2011.Van Bockel will receive a reprimand, a reduction in two ranks, and forced to perform 60 days of hard labor. And that's it. That's the bullshit sentence he gets. He doesn't even have to do the full sixty days -- he'll only serve a fraction of that because of the 45 days already served in the brig. Have a nice life.
Van Bockel is the seventh soldier found guilty by a military jury for his role in Chen's demise.
In this case, the jury found that Van Bockel taunted the 19-year-old soldier with racist nicknames, ordered him to belly crawl over rocks, and made him bark out orders in Chinese to give the platoon a laugh.
Others testified that Van Bockel allowed other soldiers to torture Chen by beating him up, throwing rocks at him, and forcing him to do pushups with a mouth full of water.
Van Bockel argued in court that Chen was a lousy soldier and what he was doing was "corrective training."
More here: Staff Sgt. Andrew VanBockel receives reprimand, reduction in rank in Danny Chen suicide case.