This occurred in Vicenza, Italy. That means the guy must have been (99.9% certain) stationed at Caserma Ederle, as either a member of the ABCT (my former unit there) or one of its support units (since the SETAF ABCT1 was the whole point of that duty station).
There was a Christmas there where the mayor of the Italian city of Vicenza was being interviewed on TV in regards to Vicenza’s US military neighbors, and of course he was saying all the politically proper pleasant things about we the US military presence, while in the background a couple of drunk-ass American soldiers in their civvies were climbing the big ol’ Christmas tree the city had decorated for the season. I remember a guy getting Article 15 administrative punishment at one point for beating the crap out of a hooker on SS-11 (the street infamous for hookers) because after paying her something like $40 she sucked on him for five minutes then declared herself done even though he hadn’t come yet. I remember a co-worker of one of my best friends, one of the nicest, sweetest girls you could meet, getting alcohol poisoning and trying to throw down with MPs one night. I remember a couple guys in my unit getting arrested and given Article 15 administrative punishment for Driving Under the Influence — on their bicycles. I remember hearing about an NCO slamming his Harley into the side of a white Fiat (why is it always a little white local car?), damn near bisecting the car while the Harley could be ridden again with a little fork-straightening and the like, but the Harley rider and both people in the car died.
I remember a lot of strange things happening there. I’ve only scratched the surface, and I haven’t even touched the things that happened during deployments to other countries.
I don’t remember anything like this, though — like this absolute disregard for the rights of others. This depraved, vile behavior is terrible. I’m not precisely shocked by it. I know what humanity is capable of doing. I know the depths to which a so-called human can sink.
What really bothers me about all this is that the guy got his sentence reduced precisely because his disrespect for human life and rights is so egregious. He’s being given a lighter sentence for the very reason he’s a danger to others. He’s being given the chance to flee his sentence, to go home and forget the whole thing. He’s being given the chance to continue to be a danger to others.
Shoot him and be done with it. Proving his depravity should not be a mitigation for how we deal with protecting the rights of others from him. If he wants mitigation, let him find it at the pearly gates, and not at the expense of the lives and rights of others.
1 SETAF = “Southern European TAsk Force” | ABCT = “Airborne Battalion Combat Team”