SEAL Team 6 member is accused of catfishing others in the elite unit via text messages to get photos of naked women
- Non-commissioned officer 1st class Aaron Howard is waiting for a military council at the Norfolk Naval Station
- He is accused of being someone else to receive nudes by text message
- But Howard & # 39; s lawyer says investigators have not found nude photos on his phone
- Says he is assigned to & # 39; trash detail & # 39; and strongly denies the allegations
A special naval operator assigned to SEAL Team 6 has been accused of being someone else in text messages to take nude photos of women from other members of the elite unit.
Non-commissioned 1st class Aaron Howard, who was named the seaman of the year in 2016, faces a general martial council at Naval Station Norfolk for the shocking accusations, the Virginian Pilot reported.
However, Howard's lawyer, Michael Waddington, plans to claim that the case should be thrown away at a hearing next week, in part because he says the & # 39; s charges are posing as a person & # 39; and & # 39; requesting nude photos & # 39; s under false pretenses & # 39; effectively made up and not mentioned anywhere in the Uniform Military Justice Code.
Waddington said the case stems from a broader investigation of spoofing, the practice of disguising communication to make it appear from a trusted source at Naval Warfare Special Development Group (DEVGRU), since SEAL Team 6 is formally known.
Navy SEAL & # 39; s conducting military diving operations off the east coast of the United States in a file photo. A member of SEAL Team 6 has been accused of catfishing other nude photo operators
Someone used software to send messages to DEVGRU members from fake phone numbers, a practice popularly known as catfishing, Waddington said.
Howard plans not to plead guilty and vigorously challenge the charges if the case continues, his lawyer said.
Waddington said naval investigators could not even find nude photos on Howard's phone and that Howard had passed two polygraft tests.
He said the only evidence investigators had to link Howard to the case is that the catfisher said he or she was once stationed in San Diego and would like to train with kettlebells.
That description can apply to any number of SEAL & # 39; s and it could easily have been invented by the catfisher, Waddington noted.
Waddington regretted that his client was assigned to & # 39; waste details & # 39; and accused superiors of interfering with the investigation by recommending other SEAL & # 39; s not to speak in defense of Howard.
Because he is planning to set up a character defense, Waddington says that this has been very harmful to building his business.
SEAL's are seen as drilling maneuvers in a file photo. The catfishing incident is only the last impression for the elite Naval special warfare group
The case is only the last shame for the SEAL & # 39; s after reports that SEAL Team 7 was sent home from Iraq for drinking so much alcohol that their commander & # 39; had lost confidence & # 39; in their ability to serve.
Foxtrot Platoon from SEAL Team 7 allegedly also held a Fourth of July party where a senior member of the team allegedly raped a female colleague – and when questioned the entire platoon claimed their right to remain silent.
The shameful incidents come just weeks after the controversial trial of war crimes by Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher, a decorated Navy SEAL who was not found guilty in 2017 of murdering a captured ISIS hunter.
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