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Stabbing death of airman on Guam deemed a homicide

Andersen Air Force Base, Guam (U.S. Air Force Photo by Staff Sgt. Aaron Richardson/Released)

The stabbing death of an airman last week at Andersen Air Force Base was a homicide, Guam’s chief medical examiner said Wednesday.

Airman 1st Class Bradley Hale, 20, who was deployed from Barksdale Air Force Base, La., was found unresponsive at a temporary lodging facility and declared dead March 27 at about 3 a.m., the Air Force said.

An airman, who has not been charged or identified, was arrested after a knife was found at the scene. He was “read his rights and placed in pretrial confinement on suspicion of Article 118 (Murder or Manslaughter),” the Air Force said.

Dr. Aurelio Espinola, chief medical examiner in Guam, said there were three fatal wounds to Hale’s neck along with numerous superficial cuts.

Espinola, who did not perform the autopsy, said he was given the autopsy report by the Air Force.

The Air Force is still investigating the death and has not disclosed information about the autopsy or the airman in custody.

Barksdale Air Force base officials said Hale of Montgomery, Texas, was an electronic warfare journeyman who had been assigned to the 2nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, 2nd Bomb Wing. He had been the service for about two years, according to the officials.

The 2nd Bomb Wing includes B-52H Stratofortress multirole bombers, which are capable of delivering conventional and nuclear weapons. The bombers have been routinely deployed to Guam in recent years – along with B-1 conventional and B-2 stealth bombers – as tensions with North Korea have increased.

The U.S. military has some 7,000 servicemembers on Guam and controls about one-third of the island. In addition to Andersen Air Force Base, the Navy houses nuclear-powered fast attack submarines at Naval Base Guam on the small U.S. territory island.


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