[Marxism] Bringing the War Home

Brian Shannon Brian_Shannon at verizon.net
Mon Aug 15 19:41:48 MDT 2005

Charged With Attempted Murder

By Denise Lavoie, Associated Press Writer  |  August 15, 2005

LAWRENCE, Mass. --A decorated Marine accused of firing a shotgun at a 
crowd of club-goers pleaded innocent Monday to attempted murder and 
other charges and was ordered to be evaluated at a state psychiatric 

Sgt. Daniel Cotnoir, 33, of Lawrence, was named "Marine of the Year" 
last month for his service in Iraq. A mortician by trade, he prepared 
the bodies of dead U.S. soldiers for burial. After returning from 10 
months in Iraq in November, Cotnoir said the job took a heavy 
psychological toll.

Early Saturday morning, police said, he pointed a 12-gauge shotgun out 
the window of his second-floor apartment and fired a single shot at a 
noisy crowd leaving nearby nightclubs. Lissette Cumba, 15, and Kelvin 
Castro, 20, were both struck in the leg by fragments. They were treated 
at local hospitals and released.

Cotnoir, a married father of two daughters, told police he feared for 
the safety of his family after someone threw an empty juice bottle 
through his bedroom window.
. . .
Cumba's cousin, Stephanie Tejeda, who was in the crowd that night, 
described seeing the muzzle poking through the open window.

"I just thought he wanted to scare us to get away from the area," said 
Tejeda, who attended Cotnoir's arraignment Monday in Lawrence District 
Court. "Who shoots at an open crowd?"

Tejeda said she does not want to see Cotnoir go to prison. "I just 
think he should get help. That's how I see it," she said.

But Cumba's uncle, James Rodriquez, was visibly angry after Cotnoir's 
arraignment. "She's been crying all night," he said of his niece. "If 
this man is sick, why was he holding weapons in his house?"

James Stokes, a retired minister who went to school with Cotnoir's 
father, said he does not believe Daniel Cotnoir was trying to kill 
anyone. "This man is a wonderful person," he said. "Something might 
have happened when he came back from Iraq. ... He's out there picking 
up body parts," he said.

Cotnoir and his father, Daniel Cotnoir, operate the Racicot Funeral 
Home in Lawrence, about 30 miles north of Boston. In Iraq, Cotnoir 
prepared the battered bodies of his fellow Marines for open-casket 
funerals. In an interview with The Boston Globe last year, he described 
retrieving charred and decimated remains. "What you see out there, it's 
a real smash to reality," Cotnoir said.

Cotnoir is charged with two counts of armed assault with intent to 
murder, two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and 
one count of discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a dwelling.
. . .
Last month, Marine Corps Times chose Cotnoir over 180,000 other 
candidates for its annual Marine of the Year award.

Now a Marine reservist, Cotnoir said in an interview last month with 
the Eagle-Tribune newspaper that he was getting counseling at a 
veterans hospital in Bedford.

"It's a lot harder to talk about the job now than it was at the time to 
actually do it," he said. "The stories I've gained from my deployment 
aren't the kind of stories you share."

Also on Monday, another Iraq war veteran appeared in court in Las Vegas 
to face charges of using an assault rifle to kill a woman and wound a 
man in an alley.

An attorney for Matthew Sepi, 20, said he acted in self-defense and 
should be eligible for psychological treatment. Sepi, an American 
Indian from Winslow, Ariz., moved to Las Vegas after being honorably 
discharged as an Army specialist in May. Sepi told police he pulled an 
assault rifle from beneath his coat and reacted when he was ambushed in 
an alley.


from Brian Shannon

More information about the Marxism mailing list