WASHINGTON - Army brass in Iraq whitewashed an incident of a soldier killed by his own lieutenant by blaming the dead hero, stonewalling his family and promoting his killer, the Daily News has learned.
The friendly-fire victim, Pfc. David Sharrett, 27, of Oakton, Va., was "misidentified" by 1stLt. Timothy Hanson as an enemy gunman during a botched night raid Jan. 16, 2008, against an Al Qaeda in Iraq stronghold north of Baghdad, the Army belatedly acknowledged.
Sharrett bled to death as his buddies searched frantically for him for 25 minutes after the firefight ended.
For four months after the Army knew the truth, it still insisted to Sharrett's father that he was killed by enemy fire - and gave only atemporary wrist slap to Hanson under pressure from the families of Sharrett and two other G.I.s killed in the clash.
After The News uncovered new video evidence and raised questions, a 101st Airborne Division general said the probe into Sharrett's death may reopen.
"The final decisions and dispositions have yet to be made," Brig. Gen. Steve Townsend said.
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