US Navy Sues Sailor Over Fire That Destroyed $750 Million USS Bonhomme Richard

US Navy accuses sailor of arson for fire that destroyed $750 million USS Bonhomme Richard, injuring 63 sailors and civilians

  • The Navy has not released the name of the sailor, who was a member of the ship’s crew at the time
  • Officials said the sailor is “charged with starting the fire” and that “evidence gathered during the investigation is sufficient to conduct a preliminary hearing”
  • Vice Admiral Steve Koehler, commander of the Third Fleet, is considering court-martial charges and has presided over a preliminary hearing to determine further steps
  • The disastrous fire started on July 12, 2020, while the Bonhomme Richard was docked in San Diego, burning 11 of the ship’s 14 decks
  • The fire injured 63 people, including 40 sailors and 23 civilians

The US Navy has charged a sailor with arson for setting fire to the USS Bonhomme Richard last July, destroying the $750 million ship and injuring 63 people.

The Navy has not released the name of the sailor, who was part of the ship’s crew at the time, according to a press release.

Officials said on Thursday that the sailor “is charged with lighting the fire” and that “the evidence gathered during the investigation is sufficient to conduct a preliminary hearing.”

Vice Admiral Steve Koehler, the commander of the Third Fleet, is considering court-martial charges and has presided over a preliminary hearing to determine whether further action should be taken as required by the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

The US Navy has charged a sailor for the fire that destroyed the $750 million USS Bonhomme Richard – injuring 63 people in July

The Navy has not released the name of the sailor, who was a member of the ship's crew

The Navy has not released the name of the sailor, who was a member of the ship’s crew

Officials said the sailor is

Officials said the sailor is “charged with starting the fire” and that “evidence gathered during the investigation is sufficient to conduct a preliminary hearing”

“An impartial hearing officer will make the determinations and recommendations required by the UCMJ prior to further litigation,” the press release said.

Those recommendations include whether there is likely reason to believe that a criminal offense has been committed.

Navy spokesman Sean Robertson said: NPR that the sailor was charged with aggravated arson and intentionally endangering a vessel.

The United States Naval Institute noted that the sailor was questioned in August by the Naval Criminal Investigation Service (NCIS) and agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

The sailor was released in November after being held in custody at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar in California San Diego Union Tribune reported earlier this month.

Photos show the charred interior of the amphibious assault ship Bonhomme Richard, which was on fire for more than four days

Vice Admiral Steve Koehler, the commander of the Third Fleet, is considering court-martial charges and has presided over a preliminary hearing to determine any further steps.

Vice Admiral Steve Koehler, the commander of the Third Fleet, is considering court-martial charges and has presided over a preliminary hearing to determine any further steps.

DailyMail.com has filed a Freedom of Information Act request to charge for documents and other data related to the fire.

The disastrous fire started on July 12, 2020, while the Bonhomme Richard was docked in San Diego.

It burned through 11 of the ship’s 14 decks before finally being extinguished four days later.

The fire injured 63 people, including 40 sailors and 23 civilians. The ship had a crew of 1,000 and about 160 sailors and officers were on board at the time of the fire.

The amphibious assault ship, which was undergoing maintenance at the time, was commissioned in 1998 for $750 million – but was eventually scrapped when the ship was deemed beyond repair.

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