Official: Manning on Lockdown for Own Safety

During the second day of Army Private First Class Bradley Manning's pretrial hearing, then-security battalion commander at Quantico brig said in a testimony that they kept the soldier on restrictive lockdown as a precaution. Col. Robert Oltman, who commanded the security battalion at Quantico while Manning was there, said the staff erred on the side of caution because Manning arrive at Quantico as a suicide risk. Col. Oltman testified that he was aware of the psychiatric staff recommendation that Manning was no longer a risk to his own safety, but that their views were only a portion of a larger assessment of Manning's status. This week's hearings cover a motion filed by Manning's defense team claiming the charges should be dismissed because he was improperly classified as a high security risk, and was subsequently kept on 23-hour lockdown in a cramped cell where he was forced to sleep naked for several nights — a punishment they say is illegal and should result in dropped charges. Manning is accused of sending thousands of classified military cables to Wikileaks while working as an intelligence analyst in Baghdad two years ago.

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