Sgt La David Johnson: 'Additional remains' found in Niger

Frederick Owens
November 22, 2017

"Today, we can confirm that the Armed Forces Medical Examiner has positively identified these remains as those of Sgt. Johnson".

The remains of a soldier killed under mysterious circumstances after an ambush in Niger were found in the African country in early November.

Amid reports that additional remains of Sgt.

Investigators are trying to find out why US forces on the ground waited an hour after the attack began before calling for support, what type of intelligence was used in the mission and why it took nearly two days for the initial discovery of Johnson's body.

His death was politicised when President Donald Trump erroneously said his predecessors had neglected to make condolence calls to the families of fallen United States soldiers.

There has been no public disclosure about whether these additional remains will provide any clues about Johnson's death or what happened to his body during the 48 hours he was missing.

Army Maj. Gen. Roger Cloutier, a career infantry officer, Iraq veteran and the chief of staff to Marine Gen. Thomas Waldhauser, commander of U.S. Africa Command, is leading an Article 15-6 fact-finding investigation into the firefight in western Niger near the Mali border.

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According to US Africa Command, investigators interviewed local villagers, physically examined multiple areas of interest and retraced actions before, during and after the ambush.

The parts were discovered more than a month after the 25-year-old soldier and three of his comrades were killed in the October ambush, and more than two weeks after his funeral.

Several US military officials caution the local reports are not yet verified.

Sgt Johnson was among four United States soldiers killed by about 50 Islamist militants.

Two more American troops were wounded and five Nigerien troops were also killed in the incident.

The Defense Department has said it expects the investigation into the Niger ambush to be completed by January. La David Johnson, questions still remain as to how he was killed, and what was in the casket his wife hovered over and said her last goodbyes to in October.

The Pentagon statement said the investigation continues into the deaths of the four soldiers - Johnson, Staff Sgt. Bryan Black, Staff Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson and Staff Sgt. Dustin Wright.

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