At least 15 drill instructors at the Marine training base on Parris Island are now under investigation for possible violations on hazing and abuse in their units, the Marines’ training command confirmed.
The Marine Corps Times reported Wednesday the instructors at Marine Recruit Depot Parris Island are being investigated for violating orders on hazing, abuse and lack of proper supervision three months after 20-year-old Recruit Raheel Siddiqui died during boot camp in March.
“The allegations, against approximately 15 drill instructors and affiliated leadership, identify potential violations of Marine Corps orders to include hazing, physical abuse, assault and failure of supervision,” officials with Training and Education Command (TRECOM), which oversee both recruit training depots, said in a statement. “The investigations date back to November of 2015 and appear isolated to companies within the 3rd Recruit Training Battalion.”
Siddiqui was assigned to 3rd Recruit Training Battalion when he died after falling nearly 40 feet down a stairwell, according to an initial Naval Criminal Investigative Service report.
The statement adds all of the accused Marines are now assigned to duties in which they have no direct interaction with recruits.
“During the course of the Recruit Siddiqui death investigation, facts revealed a drill instructor was improperly placed in charge of recruits while he was subject to an ongoing investigation,” the Marine Corps’ statement says. “Existing orders, policies and procedures to prevent improper assignments were not followed. Interim corrective actions have already been taken.”
There are currently three ongoing investigations into Siddiqui’s death. A criminal investigation is being done by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, while the Marine Corps is looking into the actions of officers at the time.
At least two personnel at Parris Island have been fired in connection with the investigation. Former head of the Recruit Training Regiment Col. Paul Cucinotta and the regiment’s Sgt. Maj. Nicholas Deabreu.