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No date set for court martial in slayings
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The fate of a Fort Stewart soldier accused of slaying two fellow 3rd Infantry Division soldiers in Iraq last fall will now be determined by the highest of military courts.
On Tuesday, the division’s commander, Maj. Gen. Tony Cucolo, recommended that Sgt. Joseph C. Bozicevich, 39, of Minneapolis, Minn., be tried at a general court martial for his involvement in the shooting deaths of a fellow team leader, Sgt. Wesley Durbin, 26, of Hurst, Texas, and squad leader, Staff Sgt. Darris Dawson, 24, of Pensacola, Fla.
All three were assigned to the division’s A Company, 3rd Battalion, 7th Infantry, and 4th Brigade Combat Team at the time of the incident, Sept. 14, while the unit was on a 15-month tour to Southwest Baghdad.
Witnesses at Bozicevich’s four-day Article 32 hearing in April told the pretrial investigator, Col. Michael Hargis, that Bozicevich had shot and killed both men in the wee hours of the morning outside a joint security station in retaliation for being scolded by Dawson for a grenade that was lost earlier in the day and for Bozicevich reportedly leaving a soldier behind during a security mission.
“When I turned the corner, I could see Sgt. Bozicevich kind of cornering up, running up on the body. Staff Sgt. John Dressel told Hargis. “As I am seeing Sgt. Bozicevich, he’s saying, ‘(Expletive), I’m going to kill you’. Pow! I could see the muzzle flash … When the muzzle flash came up, I could see his face …”
Dressel was not available for comment Tuesday or Wednesday. However, he earlier told the Courier,  “I don’t know how he (Bozicevich) can live with himself.”.
The Courier also tried to contact Dawson’s stepmother, Maxine Mathis, for comment. Several attempts to phone her did not render a response.
In earlier phone conversations she has expressed empathy for all of those involved. “I do not wish any ill-will on that young man,” she said in January. “I don’t wish that young man to have a death sentence. I don’t wish that he spend the rest of his life in prison. I only wish that I and my husband can talk with him. I want to know from him why and what went wrong?”
Court martials are the military’s equivalent of criminal trials. In a general court martial the maximum punishment may include the death sentence, confinement and/or dishonorable or bad conduct discharge.
No date has been set for Bozicevich’s court martial.
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