Prisoner Abuse Hearing

Iraqi Prisoner Abuse
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The government is wrapping up its initial case against the female soldier accused of abusing Iraqi prisoners. Private First Class Lynndie England is charged with 13 counts of abuse. Friday's testimony focused on the soldier who tipped off investigators.

Lynndie England walked into court at Fort Bragg, North Carolina for a fourth day---the government's case of abuse steadily building up around her.

England's fellow soldier, who turned over the controversial pictures, testified by phone, "I was kind of shocked and bewildered and didn't know what to do."

Sergeant Joseph Darby's decision to report the abuse at Abu Ghraib prison bolsters the government's argument that England and others were rogue soldiers who operated outside the chain of command.

The defense maintains that members of England's company were improperly trained and would subsequently follow orders to soften up prisoners for interrogators. On cross-examination, the day shift commander at Abu Ghraib admitted, "No one knew what they were supposed to do."

And England's commander testified the duties at the prison were not something they had trained for. But did confirm England attended training, which focused on treating Iraqis with dignity and respect.

The defense, led by a Denver attorney, wants to call the former top commander in Iraq, Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez and Brigadier General Janis Karpinski, who ran Abu Ghraib. The judge did not immediately grant that request.

England is one of seven charged with abuse. Testimony this week paints the father of her unborn child, Charles Graner, as the ringleader of abuse on the night shift. England was assigned daytime clerk work and her superiors say she had no official business joining Graner on that shift.