He told the judge that his only worldly possession was a 1995 Lincoln Town Car.
Beyond that, Green's 21-year life is sketchy at best, although as someone who has edited and written many stories about the perpretator of the moment over a long newspaper career, I can state with certainty that he was not a choirboy whose inner demons suddenly and inexplicably were unleashed when he first spotted a beautiful young woman passing through his checkpoint on the way to and from school in Mahmoudiya, Iraq.Green lived in Midland, Texas, long the home town of the Bush family. (Yes, that Bush family.) He had enlisted in the Army in June 2005. Before being sent to Iraq last September, he underwent basic and advanced training at Fort Benning, Georgia, where he was one of hundreds of soldiers who attended the weekly Church of Christ service at the base's chapel.
Said Preacher Ben Overby, who led the services:
He's one of the countless guys coming through that are looking for something, searching for something to hang onto in his life. We're just there to encourage guys like him, help give him some hope.
We need to counsel this wrecked soul [while he awaits trial]. We just want him to be ministered to so he can just get a taste of some hope. Right now he has to be broken and guilt-ridden -- if he has any conscience at all.The question of whether Green does have anything resembling a conscience is important since he was honorably discharged from the Army two months after the rape-murders after being diagnosed with an "anti-social personality disorder."
If found guilty, whether he has a conscience also will go a long way to determining whether his next stop is a padded room or a gallows.Green was visiting relatives in Marion, North Carolina when he was arrested by FBI agents. A relative said that he was on his way to or from a funeral at Arlington National Cemetery for a member of his platoon who was killed in Iraq.
Green's father, John, said from his home in Midland that he was shocked by allegations against his son and referred all questions to lawyer Hal Brockett.
Brockett said he has been acquainted with John Green since they attended Lee High School in Midland, where young Green apparently dropped out after 10th grade. He later received his GED.
In January 2005, Green was arrested in Midland for being a minor in possession of alcohol, a misdemeanor. He served time in Midland County Central Detention Center and was released in early February.
Greg Simolke, a nephew who saw Green before he went overseas, said:
When he was here for this visit, he seemed like the same old Steve. I don't understand what happens in a war, so I don't know how these things happen.The Army seemed to have bought into that notion. It featured Green in an Army News Service photo last December showing him about to shoot the lock off of the gate during a search of homes in an unidentified neighborhood.
He had found direction in his life, something important and something that he really wanted to do. He was talking about making the military his career and was ready to go to Iraq. He thought it was a good thing to be serving his country.
The photo has since been removed from the news service's Website.
* * * * *Background information for this and the previous post was taken from stories by The Associated Press, Charlotte Observer, Dallas Morning News, FindLaw, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Houston Chronicle, KTEN-TV Texas, MyWestTexas.com, National Public Radio, The News Blog, San Jose Mercury News, The Telegraph UK and Washington Post.