Jailed US soldier who killed Iraqi family takes own life

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 20 February, 2014, 9:32pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 20 February, 2014, 9:32pm


A former US soldier has killed himself in a federal prison where he was serving life sentences for raping and killing a teenage Iraqi girl and slaying her family.

An autopsy concluded Steven Dale Green had committed suicide by hanging in his cell in Tucson, Arizona.

Green, 28, of Midland, Texas, was a private in the 101st Airborne Division when he deployed to Iraq. In March 2006, he and three other soldiers went to the home of an Iraqi family in Mahmoudiya.

There, he shot and killed three members of the al-Janabi family before becoming the third soldier to rape Abeer Qassim al-Janabi, 14, and then killing her. He was convicted and sentenced in 2009.

Three other soldiers - Jesse Spielman, Paul Cortez and James Barker - are serving lengthy sentences in military prison for their roles in the attack. Each is eligible for parole in 2015. Green was the first American soldier charged and convicted under the Military Extraterritorial Jurisdiction Act, which gives the federal government jurisdiction to pursue criminal cases against US citizens and soldiers for acts committed in foreign lands.

Green was frustrated that he was tried and convicted in the civilian system, which does not afford inmates parole. "I was made to pay for all the war crimes. I'm the only one here in federal prison," he once said.