NORFOLK, Va. — Chief Special Warfare Operator Tony DeDolph, one of four servicemembers charged with the strangulation death of Army Staff Sgt. Logan Melgar, will plead guilty to some charges related to the crime, according to his lawyer.
Military Defender Phil Stackhouse said Tuesday that DeDolph, a member of SEAL Team 6, had "entered into an agreement with Rear Admiral Charles Rock, USN, to resolve his pending charges."
DeDolph was charged with murder, involuntary manslaughter, hazing and obstruction of justice after the death of Melgar in June 2017. Melgar was a 34-year-old U.S. Army Green Beret who was stationed in Mali.
In the trials of the other military members who were charged in the case, Melgar's death was described as an accident. Defendants testified that they put Melgar in a hazing-related chokehold, intended to knock him out temporarily. He died of asphyxiation.
Stackhouse said he wouldn't confirm to which charges DeDolph will plead guilty.
"We believe what is intended by a person’s actions is eminently important and the agreement recognizes that SOC DeDolph never intended to injure SSG Logan Melgar, USA, but also recognizes the fact that SSG Melgar died as a result of actions that went tragically wrong on June 4, 2017," Stackhouse wrote in an email to 13News Now.
He acknowledged Melgar's family still would feel grief but said, "perhaps the resolution of this case will further help them find closure and peace."