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Army soldier charged in crash that killed West Point cadet, injured 21 others

2019-09-26

The soldier who crashed a tactical truck near the U.S. Military Academy in June, killing a West Point cadet and injuring 21, now faces multiple charges including involuntary manslaughter.

Staff Sgt. Ladonies Strong was charged Sept. 13 with negligent homicide, reckless operation of a vehicle and prevention of authorized seizure of property and reckless operation of a vehicle, according to the Army.

She also was charged with two specifications of dereliction of duty, 3rd Infantry Division spokesman Lt. Col. Patrick Husted told the Army Times.

Strong is set for a mid-October preliminary hearing. It has not been determined whether the charges will be referred to a court-martial.

The vehicle rollover, in which 22-year-old Christopher “C.J.” Morgan died, was still under investigation, Husted said. Morgan, from West Orange, N.J., was on the Army wrestling team.

“He was a talented, hardworking, and determined athlete who loved his sport,” Army wrestling coach Kevin Ward said in a statement in June. “Chris had an infectious personality with a smile big enough to fill any room, and a heart big enough to love everyone around him. He made everyone around him better and he will be greatly missed.”

Two soldiers and 19 other cadets were injured when the vehicle overturned.