Navy May Charge Officer Who Fatally Shot Chattanooga Gunman

Navy May Charge Officer Who Fatally Shot Chattanooga Gunman

A Navy official told Fox News that punishing a lieutenant commander who used an unauthorized weapon to fire back at the Chattanooga gunman who shot and killed five service members could not be “completely ruled out.”

The Navy said in a statement that it had not charged Lt. Cmdr. Timothy White for opening fire on federal property against the gunman in Chattanooga, despite conflicting reports, because the investigation is still ongoing. No other service members have been charged with an offense at the present time either.

Last month, Lt. Cmdr. Timothy White discharged his personal firearm on federal property in attempt to kill or subdue gunman Muhammad Abdulazeez, who killed five service members in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Although the ban is now being questioned, military personnel are not allowed to carry weapons inside military recruiting and reserve stations.

White could face disciplinary action for violating the policy and possessing a weapon on the gun-free facility.

Lt. Tim Hawkins, a Navy spokesman, said, “There’s a long way to go in reviewing all the facts of this case.”

“Stories of Navy personnel being charged with an offense are not true,” the statement said. “There is still a long way to go in reviewing the facts of this tragic incident, but at this time we can confirm no service member has been charged with an offense.”

Two high-profile former military officers, including Democratic presidential candidate Jim Webb, say the Navy is “seriously considering” charging the man.

However, a senior defense official said Monday morning that it is “extremely unlikely” that White would be charged; however, a proper investigation into the events in Chattanooga needed to occur.

“Even if remote, is there a chance [White] contributed to the chaos and got people killed? Hurt police efforts?” the official said. “We are exploring that.”

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