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Angered that a beloved member of his squad had been killed in an explosion, a US Marine urinated on one of the 24 dead Iraqi civilians killed by his unit in Haditha, the Marine testified.
Sergeant Sanick Dela Cruz, who has immunity from prosecution after murder charges against him were dismissed, also said he watched his squad leader shoot down five Iraqi civilians who were trying to surrender.
In dramatic testimony in a pretrial hearing for one of the seven Marines charged in the November 2005 killings and reported cover-up at Haditha, Dela Cruz described his bitterness after a roadside bomb ripped Lance Corporal Miguel Terrazas, known as TJ, into two bloody pieces.
"I know it was a bad thing what I've done, but I done it because I was angry TJ was dead and I pissed on one Iraqi's head," said an unemotional Dela Cruz in a military courtroom in Camp Pendleton, north of San Diego, California.
Dela Cruz said he had earlier he watched squad leader Sergeant Frank Wuterich shoot five men whose hands were up near a car, then admitted to shooting them as they lay on the ground.
Wuterich "walked to me and told me that if anybody asked, they were running away and the Iraqi Army shot them," testified Dela Cruz.
Three Marines have been charged with murder, and four officers have been charged with dereliction of duty and obstructing the investigation.
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