- The Washington Times - Monday, August 3, 2015

The Pentagon says it’s far from finishing its review of last month’s rampage in Chattanooga, rejecting reports that charges are about to be brought against a Navy officer who engaged the man accused of opening fire at two military installations, killing five.

Provoked by a barrage of complaints, the Navy said on Sunday that it has not charged Lt. Cmdr. Timothy White with any counts related to the July 16 tragedy.

“[S]tories of Navy personnel being charged with an offense are not true. There is still a long way to go in reviewing the facts of this tragic incident, but at this time we can confirm no service member has been charged with an offense,” the Navy said through its official Facebook page.

The Navy’s dismissal was authored in response to several complaints made over the weekend after reports surfaced that Lt. Cmdr. White would be court-martialed for discharging a firearm on federal property during last month’s incident. Those murmurings first emerged after Allen West, a retired lieutenant colonel and Fox News contributor, wrote on his blog on Saturday that it had been confirmed to him through a text message he had received from an unnamed source.

Jim Webb, a former senator for Virginia currently seeking the Democratic Party’s nomination for president, said on Saturday that his office had confirmed the reports as well.

“Navy charging LCDR Tim White w/ a crime for trying to defend our sailors & Marines in #Chattanooga? He deserves a medal, not an indictment,” he wrote on Twitter. In a follow-up post three hours later, Mr. Webb explained that he had confirmed with a defense official that the Navy was “seriously considering” bringing charges against White.

Authorities say Mohammad Youssef Abdulazeez killed five and injured two others during a rampage that targeted personnel at a recruiting center and a Navy Reserve center. He was fatally wounded during a shoot-out at the second location.

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