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Soldier receives 6-month sentence in hazing case

FORT BRAGG, NC (AP) — A second soldier accused of driving an Asian-American private to suicide has received a six-month prison sentence after pleading guilty to reduced charges in a court-martial at Fort Bragg.

Spc. Ryan J. Offutt of Greenville, Pa., pleaded guilty Monday to one count of hazing and two specifications of maltreatment in the death of 19-year-old Danny Chen of New York. Authorities say Chen shot himself last year in Afghanistan after being hazed over his ethnicity.

Offutt also will be demoted to private and receive a bad conduct discharge. He faced several charges, including negligent homicide.

Last month, Sgt. Adam Holcomb was convicted of mistreating Chen, but he was acquitted of being a cause of Chen’s death last fall. Holcomb was sentenced to 30 days in a military prison and other penalties.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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