2 face hazing charges at Beaufort Air Station

BEAUFORT, S.C. (WCIV/AP) - The Marine Corps says that two staff noncommissioned officers have been charged in a hazing incident at the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort.

The Beaufort Gazette reports that Marine spokesman Capt. Jordan Cochran says the two were charged with failure to obey an order after an investigation by the base's Criminal Investigative Division.

Cochran says the investigation is continuing and he could not talk about what it involves. He also says he cannot release the names of those charged or say when proceedings against them will be held.

The air station released a statement saying the two non-commissioned officers were charged under the Uniform Code of Military Justice and referred to a Special Court-Martial after their commanding officer called for an investigation.

The allegations were disclosed by the base Dec. 14. The investigation was reportedly started two days earlier.

One of the men, identified as Gunnery Sgt. James McArthur, will have a trial in late August. He's facing charges of violating orders, maltreatment, and obstructing justice, the statement said.

The second Marine, identified as SSgt. Justin L. Samford, was accused of violating orders, maltreatment, giving a false statement and assault. His arraignment is scheduled for Monday, officials said.

"Every incident of hazing will be investigated with appropriate disciplinary action initiated against the perpetrators and those in the chain of command who condone such practices by inaction or neglecting to investigate suspected incidents," the statement read.


Information from: The Beaufort Gazette,