BREAKING NEWS Man charged in death of Eagle Point toddler Full Story

US investigating possible case of 'friendly fire' after American contractor and Marine killed in Iraq

Article Image

The US military announced Tuesday that a US contractor was killed in Iraq Saturday during an incident that also resulted in the...

Posted: Aug 14, 2019 3:55 AM

The US military announced Tuesday that a US contractor was killed in Iraq Saturday during an incident that also resulted in the death of a US Marine.

US contractor Saif Rashaed and Gunnery Sgt. Scott A. Koppenhafer "gave the ultimate sacrifice in service to our country," US Central Command said in a statement.

"We will not forget their sacrifice. As we mourn their loss, we are reminded of the significant dangers our men and women face while serving our nation," the statement added.

The Department of Defense said in an updated statement Tuesday that Koppenhafer "died August 10, 2019, in Iraq, after suffering fatal wounds while supporting Iraqi Security Forces," and that "this incident is under investigation." The Pentagon on Sunday had initially said that Koppenhafer had died as a result of "enemy small arms fire while conducting combat operations."

Friendly fire possibility

A US defense official told CNN that the investigation will be looking at the circumstances surrounding Koppenhafer's death, including a possibility that he was killed by "friendly fire." The official added, however, that this is only one of the possible scenarios being examined and that it is possible that he died due to enemy action.

The Wall Street Journal was the first to report that friendly fire was being looked at as a possible cause of death.

The US has some 5,200 troops in Iraq where they primarily advise and assist Iraqi forces as they battle the remnants of ISIS.

While the terror group has been driven from major population centers, it has retained a presence in Iraq, with a Pentagon Inspector General's report warning earlier this month that ISIS had "solidified its insurgent capabilities in Iraq" in recent months.

Last month the US-led military coalition battling ISIS conducted 33 air or artillery strikes against ISIS targets in Iraq, targeting fighters, buildings, tunnels, weapons caches, and vehicles, according to a coalition statement.

Article Comments

Medford
Clear
82° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 57°
Feels Like: 82°
Brookings
Clear
66° wxIcon
Hi: 84° Lo: 55°
Feels Like: 66°
Crater Lake
Clear
75° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 75°
Grants Pass
Clear
79° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 59°
Feels Like: 79°
Klamath Falls
Clear
75° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 75°
Sunny & Seasonal Weekend
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events

Latest Video

Image

Saturday, August 17 evening weather

Image

Saturday, August 17 morning weather

Image

Mt. Shasta Hiker Shares Experience

Image

Siskiyou Peaks Trail

Image

Mt Shasta Hiker Survives

Image

Friday, August 16th Evening Weather

Image

Golf Tip of the Week: Eagle Point Golf Club

Image

employees jump into rescue

Image

Friday, August 16 afternoon weather

Image

Food vendors serve Josephine County Fair for years