Los Angeles: A US Marine officer accused of failing to investigate Iraqi civilian deaths in Haditha rejected a plea deal under which his charges would be dismissed in exchange for an admission that he covered up the killings, his attorney said.
First Lieutenant Andrew Grayson is one of four officers who were charged with dereliction of duty for allegedly failing to probe the November 19, 2005 assault that left 24 Iraqis dead.
The killings occurred after a military convoy was hit by a roadside bomb. A Marine squad shot five men by a car and then killed 19 others as they cleared several houses in hopes of finding whoever set off the bomb.
"I was asked by the prosecution to fall on my sword for the greater good of the Marine Corps," Grayson, 26, said. "The prosecution wanted me to distort the truth to fit their end goal."