2 Marine NCOs Charged in Hazing Investigation

Two staff noncommissioned officers have been charged with violating policies on hazing at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, a base public affairs officer said Thursday.

Capt. Jordan Cochran said the two noncommissioned officers were charged with failure to obey an order or regulation after an investigation by the base's Criminal Investigative Division into hazing allegations, which surfaced in December.

Cochran said he could not comment on what the investigation uncovered or when the officers' proceedings would occur, because the investigation continues. He also would not reveal their names or specific ranks.

The entry point for a staff noncommissioned officer in the Marines is a staff sergeant, according to military.com.

The allegations were disclosed by the base Dec. 14, and soon after, the commanding officer, Col. Brian Murtha, directed the investigative division to look into the hazing allegations.

The two noncommissioned officers were charged under Article 92 of the Code of Military Justice for violating the hazing policy, Cochran said. The base has not released any further details about the case.

The Marine Corps Installations East commanding general's policy on hazing, which applies to the air station, called the prevention of hazing an "all-hands responsibility" and encourages victims or witnesses to report violations.

Under that policy, officers in the chain of command who neglect to investigate suspected incidents can be punished.

In a statement Wednesday, Cochran said, "All leaders aboard Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort are entrusted with ensuring all Marines are treated with dignity, care and respect. Hazing will not be tolerated in any form in our Marine Corps."

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