By Drew Brooks
Copyright 2014 The Fayetteville Observer, N.C.
Fayetteville, N.C. — A nine-soldier crime ring that began in Afghanistan has been tied to the 2012 shooting death of a well-respected Fort Bragg officer, according to federal court documents.
Lt. Col. Roy Tisdale was shot and killed during a unit safety briefing on June 28, 2012.
At the time, officials were quiet on what could have driven his killer, Spc. Ricky Elder, to shoot Tisdale and then turn the gun on himself.
The pair had deployed together with the 525th Battlefield Surveillance Brigade's Special Troops Battalion. And Elder was facing a court-martial for stealing a $1,700 tool kit. But there was no clear connection.
But documents related to two criminal cases that ended last year paint a more complete picture of the events leading up to Tisdale's death on a hot Fort Bragg afternoon.
"It is my opinion, that had these larcenies not occurred, Lt. Col. Tisdale would still be with us today."
Capt. Aaron E. Adams, now stationed at the Joint Multinational Readiness Center at Hohenfels, Germany, wrote those words in a letter included in the case file for Chief Warrant Officer 3 Kurt Allen Bennett.
Bennett is a helicopter pilot who in 2012 served as brigade tactical operations officer and then led the brigade's enabler security team.