Fort Bliss Soldier Sentenced to Almost 41 Years for Murder, Assault


A soldier at Fort Bliss, Texas, has been convicted of murder and other charges and sentenced to nearly 41 years in prison.

Pfc. Luis A. Morales-Sanchez, 24, was convicted of one specification of murder in violation of Article 118 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice by a military judge during a court-martial at Fort Bliss on May 10, the base said in a release the following day.

He also was convicted of multiple other charges in violation of various UCMJ articles, in accordance with his pleas: five specifications of assault consummated by a battery; two specifications of willfully disobeying a superior commissioned officer; and one specification each of making a false official statement, wrongful use of a controlled substance, simple assault, aggravated assault and extramarital sexual conduct.

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However, Morales-Sanchez did not plead guilty to the murder charge or several other charges of which he was acquitted. He was found not guilty of two specifications of attempting to violate a lawful order; two specifications of disobeying a superior commissioned officer; and one specification each of unlawful possession of a controlled substance, wrongful discharge of a firearm, aggravated assault, and negligent discharge of a firearm.

The judge sentenced Morales-Sanchez to 40 years, 10 months of confinement, and a dishonorable discharge.

"1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss [are] committed to maintaining the integrity and impartiality of the military justice system," the release states.

The exact nature of the crimes Morales-Sanchez was accused and convicted of remains unclear. Fort Bliss's public affairs office said in an email to that it was not provided with a charge sheet or a photograph.

The base said that Morales-Sanchez was an 88M motor transport operator assigned to 3rd Battalion, 501st Aviation Regiment, 1st Armored Division Combat Aviation Brigade. He joined the Army in March 2017, and Fort Bliss was the only place he was ever stationed.

Morales-Sanchez's attorney could not immediately be reached for comment.

-- Stephen Losey can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @StephenLosey.

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