Two former soldiers were indicted on murder charges after a fellow soldier died from stab sounds in military barracks, according to a Department of Justice press release.
Byron Booker, 28, and Jordan Brown, 21, were charged with the June 2020 death of Specialist Austin J. Hawke, 24, at Fort Stewart Military Reservation in Georgia, according to the press release.
Booker joined the Army in 2015 as a chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear specialist but left the Army a few weeks before the incident, Military.com reported.
It was unclear how Booker was able to gain access to the base, Fort Stewart officials said.
Two Men Indicted in Death of Fort Stewart Soldier Found Stabbed to Death in Installation Housing: Byron Booker and Jordan Brown, former soldiers, were indicted on charges of murder conspiracy after another soldier was found dead in his barracks room in … https://t.co/JGGBm1LPqf
— FBI Atlanta (@FBIAtlanta) April 13, 2021
The 21-page indictment alleges that Booker and Brown conspired to retaliate against Hawke after the specialist reported Booker to the U.S. Army for “poor leadership, poor military performance, and maltreatment of subordinates.” Brown was also alleged to have sought retaliation because Hawke reported him for drug use, according to the press release.
Hawke was found stabbed in his barracks on June 17, 2020. (RELATED: Three US Army Soldiers Killed While Training At Fort Stewart In Georgia)
“It is a high priority for our office to pursue justice for members of the military who are victims of violent crime,” Acting U.S. Attorney Estes said. “We commend the FBI and the U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command and other law enforcement partners for their tireless and detailed work on this case.”
Hawk’s grandmother Sandra Hodge wrote a victim impact statement on July 27 where she said Hawke was “my hero, my love.”
“I am haunted by the horrible attack that took his life. His pain, his suffering must have been beyond belief. He was such a strong, amazing young man and had so much to look forward to. He had plans to finish his electrical engineering degree at Arizona State University. He was looking forward to beginning a new journey in life. … I miss him so much, and the pain of his loss will never leave me,” she wrote.