Prosecutor: Former Marine instructor's hazing targeted Muslims
CAMP LEJEUNE, Onslow County - Military prosecutors say a former Marine Corps drill instructor facing court-martial on charges including cruelty and maltreatment was "drunk on power" and targeted three Muslim recruits for abuse.
Testimony began Tuesday at the military trial of Gunnery Sgt. Joseph Felix at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. Prosecutors said Felix punched, choked and kicked recruits at the Marine Corps' Parris Island, South Carolina, training center.
Felix also burned one recruit after ordering him into a commercial clothes dryer and turning it on after interrogating him about his Muslim faith.
Investigators said that after a confrontation with Felix last year, 20-year-old recruit Raheel Siddiqui fell three stories to his death. Siddiqui's death was declared suicide, but the Marine Corps says it has since uncovered widespread hazing of recruits involving nearly two dozen people.