American Scene: Teen guilty in flame attack on middle-school classmate

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FORT HOOD — An Army psychiatrist charged in a deadly shooting rampage at Fort Hood was barred from military court by the judge Tuesday because he still has a beard.

Maj. Nidal Hasan was told that he couldn’t attend any more hearings or the upcoming murder trial unless he shaves. The judge, Col. Gregory Gross, initially warned Maj. Hasan that he was violating Army policy at a hearing earlier this month.

The hearing on several other motions, including a possible trial delay, continued with Maj. Hasan watching on closed-circuit television from a nearby room.

Lead defense attorney Lt. Col. Kris Poppe has said Maj. Hasan grew the beard as a “deeply sincere” expression of his Islamic faith and because he has a premonition he will die soon.

Maj. Hasan faces the death penalty if convicted of 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder in the November 2009 attack at the Texas Army post.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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