Transcript | US v Pfc. Manning, Witness Col. Robert Oltman, Security Battalion Commander, Quantico

UPDATE POST COURT-MARTIAL

United States v. Pfc.Manning was conducted in de facto secrecy. The public was not granted contemporaneous access to court filings or rulings during her trial. In addition to reporting on her trial, I transcribed the proceedings, reconstructed the censored appellate list, and un-redacted any publicly available documentation, in order to foster public comprehension of her unprecedented trial.

As a result of a lawsuit against the military judge and the Military District of Washington brought by the Center for Constitutional Rights, as well as my own FOIA requests and research, an official court record for US v. Pfc. Manning was released seven months after her trial. That record is not complete.

The official trial docket is published HERE and the entire collection of documents is text searchable at usvmanning.org.

*During the pretrial proceedings, court-martial and sentencing of Pfc. Manning, Chelsea requested to be identified as Bradley and addressed using the male pronoun. In a letter embargoed for August 22, 2013 Chelsea proclaimed that she is female and wished to be addressed from that moment forward as Chelsea E. Manning.

See Transcript of US v Pfc. Manning, Article 39(a), 11/28/12

Col. Robert Oltman, Security Battalion Commander, Quantico

Col. Robert Oltman, Security Battalion Commander, Quantico

DEFENSE CALLS COL. ROBERT OLTMAN. SWORN IN BY THE PROSECUTION.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

CW4 Averhart and CW2 Barnes did reports [sent] to you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

Not aware reported up to Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

I forwarded to Col. Choike...not sure if Lt. Gen. Flynn...

Defense (Coombs)

Do you remember telling me CW4 Averhart in fact reported that Lt. Gen. Flynn got it?

Col. Robert Oltman

I was aware Col. Choike was sending to Lt. Gen. Flynn.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Nor was I involved in this one, except for Col. Choike.

Defense (Coombs)

Never? Brig briefed by [missed]?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

What that unusual?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

I missed a few questions about a communication regarding an email from Col. Choike to Col. Oltman regarding Lt. Gen. Flynn. The email in question is found in the Article 13 supplement and reads as follows:

20. Shortly after PFC Manning arrived at the Quantico Brig, on 9 August 2010, [Lt. Gen. George Flynn] contacted Col. Choike, and Col. Oltman and one other individual forwarded a newspaper story from the New York Times concerning PFC Manning's background, and stated the following:

...

We have had one suicide of a high risk prisoner in the brig. We need to make sure that we have covered down on what we learned from that case. Based on the below [the New York Times story], this young man has a great deal on his plate and it would be good if you impressed upon all who come in contact with Pvt. Manning the absolute necessity of keeping a close watch on him. This includes Brig, medical, Chaplain and transport personnel. His life has completely fallen apart which makes him a strong candidate (from my perspective) to take his life.

Defense (Coombs)

He [Lt. Gen. Flynn] was concerned that [Pfc. Manning] was a suicide risk?

Col. Robert Oltman

...not Pfc. Manning. He does draw a correlation.

Defense (Coombs)

'His life has completely fallen apart which makes him a strong candidate (from my perspective) to take his life'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

He thought he was a suicide risk?

Col. Robert Oltman

I could draw that.

Defense (Coombs)

Did Lt. Gen. Flynn give you a directive?

Col. Robert Oltman

He was giving us guidance.

Defense (Coombs)

He also said, 'impress upon', did you?

Col. Robert Oltman

I didn't. The clinic does not work for me. The chaplain does not work for me. Transport does not fall under me... [missed].

Defense (Coombs)

He is a three star general?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

What do you do if a three star general gives you a directive?

Col. Robert Oltman

The base commander...OPT operational planning team [meeting]... ...all base functions....PAO [Public Affairs Office].

Defense (Coombs)

How many people?

Col. Robert Oltman

Around 15.

Defense (Coombs)

Who?

Col. Robert Oltman

Col. Choike [Quantico base commander]; Captain Neill [Navy Health Clinic commander]; CW4 Averhart Brig OIC [Office in Charge]; his Master Sergeant Papakie; probably someone from G3 base operations; probably Lt. Col. Greer or new man, the base SJA [Staff Judge Advocate]; and my XO [Executive Officer].

Defense (Coombs)

Major Evans?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes

Defense (Coombs)

Update?

Col. Robert Oltman

What do we know. Any guidance from PSL division [Law Enforcement & Corrections (PSL) Marine Corps Headquarters]-- oversight for corrections-- what we would receive-- do.

Defense (Coombs)

How do you impress upon?

Col. Robert Oltman

This guidance.

Defense (Coombs)

How?

Col. Robert Oltman

We say, 'Hey, how do we do this right? Let's not forget lessons from detainee Webb.'

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

The fact that he is coming to us in suicide [risk] status...fact he was in suicide risk...[missed].

Defense (Coombs)

Retrieving appellate exhibit 419(a). Lt. Gen. Flynn receiving weekly reports, knew sent to you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Addressed to you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Knew forwarding to Col. Choike?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

I would say safe assumption. He was POTT [?]. Knew guidance.

Defense (Coombs)

And then his successor CW2 Barnes reports knew going up to Col. Choike? Knew going to Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Master Sergeant papakie also knew reports going to you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Then to Col. Choike?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Then to Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Know Gunnery Sergeant Benis aslo involved in weekly reports?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

His counselor, to you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

To Col. Choike?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

To Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

You believed that [Brig] guards knew that Lt. Gen. Flynn aware?

Col. Robert Oltman

I can't say for certain, but there was a lot of interest.

Defense (Coombs)

Do you remember telling me the influence a three star general [has on] junior officers?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall saying, but it makes sense.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Regarding influence.]

Defense (Coombs)

What you said, 'We need your unfettered opinion-- not what you think you want me to say'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall. Was that two months ago?

Defense (Coombs)

Not that long.

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.] I said that because I wanted them to know that we're the tactical people on the ground-- eyes and ears. I wanted to know what they thought and assessment-- not what they thought other people wanted them to say.

Defense (Coombs)

'I want you to do what you think you should do'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

'You wanted to insulate them'?

Col. Robert Oltman

That is what a commander does.

Defense (Coombs)

Do you remember telling me what you said in the staff meeting?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

No. I mean you gave this at a staff meeting, 'I don't want you to be influenced that people higher up are watching this'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

'You are doing the right thing...don't worry about the media, protests, etc.'?'

Col. Robert Oltman

That sounds like me.

Defense (Coombs)

Ever give guidance like this?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

So, first time required?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes, in that form.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes, but as CO [commanding officer] I am also CO of MP [military Police] and Fire and Rescue.

Defense (Coombs)

I was just saying with a specific detainee?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes, but I was giving the guidance I always give-- 'Say what you mean, and mean what you say.' My point was that was not the only conversation I had with the Brig, also with the Military Police.

Defense (Coombs)

We'll get to that. You reiterated guidance because of high level of interest in case?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

Someone could be influenced...[missed]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Now with Military Police, you reiterated because of protests?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes, protests, activists...

Defense (Coombs)

Phone calls?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Not uncommon for dispatch [to receive phone calls]...

Defense (Coombs)

You had protests, when?

Col. Robert Oltman

Day of week, time of year?

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Protest outside gate rather small-- 30 or 40-- weekend-- wasn't real [missed word] October and November time frame. Other one after-- larger-- same location-- on weekend...

Defense (Coombs)

January?

Col. Robert Oltman

Could be.

Defense (Coombs)

So after reiterating guidance, staff said, 'Got it.' Do their job?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

You indicated that Lt. Gen. Flynn never said [missed] on specific custody status or handeling?

Col. Robert Oltman

That's correct.

Defense (Coombs)

Did he ever say, 'Should be downgraded'?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

[This line of questions is about Col. Oltman's XO [Executive Officer] Ebits(sp.)] [Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

...initial guidance from Col.Choike.

Defense (Coombs)

[Appellate exhibit 419(b)] Recognize?

Col. Robert Oltman

I do.

Defense (Coombs)

Second page-- email-- you to Col. Choike?

Col. Robert Oltman

And, I believe Chief of Staff for Col. Choike.

Defense (Coombs)

You 'just got off the phone' and what did [XO] Ebits (sp.) tell you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall.

Defense (Coombs)

Don't recall XO?

Col. Robert Oltman

I recall, 'any change in status must be approved by XO'.

Defense (Coombs)

Any details?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall.

Defense (Coombs)

Because it's been so long?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

[Coombs reads from email] '...I concurred with all'? Correct?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

So, if CW4 Averhart or CW2 Barnes made a change, they would check with you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes, except immediate change.

Defense (Coombs)

Like life or death?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Walk me through.

Col. Robert Oltman

They would do a [C&A] board...I would get report-- weekly staff meeting-- constant interface if I had questions I would give a call. Once I was comfortable that I had a good understanding, then we were good.

Defense (Coombs)

What does 'we were good' mean?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

As Security Battalion Commander did you have the authority to tell Brig what to do?

Col. Robert Oltman

Authority. I am the commanding officer-- except anything outside regulations.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Theoretically, yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Because you would be working for me [Gives example. I missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

That's not how I operated.

Defense (Coombs)

Not what I am asking. You had the authority?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

So, you were their reporting officer--CW4 Averhart and CW2 Barnes?

Col. Robert Oltman

I was their reporting senior.

Defense (Coombs)

So, 'Boss' here is Col. Choike. You said 'Boss' Is that Col. Choike, 'I see emails!'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe I am talking about Col. Choike-- anybody immediately over me-- I could use that term for Lt. Gen. Flynn [missed].

[Coombs is referring to this 10 March 2011 email:

Gents

Just got off phone with [XO Ebits (sp.)]. She has informed me that any changes in Manning Status must be approved by [XO Ebits (sp.)]. I think there is an assumption being made that [CW2 Barnes] is acting alone and unafraid in her decision process with regard to status and or handling instruction changes with regard to Manning. That is not the case. She and I discuss, same as I did with [CW4 Averhart], every decision and every change and to date I have concurred with all. Also every change has been discussed with the Boss [Col. Choike] Not sure how much more involved we can be. Understand where guidance is coming from and we will do as directed. However I respectfully make the following requests 1) We adhere to the chain of command. XXXXXXXXXX will conact [sic] me and I will contact XXXXXXXXXX. 2) Based on conditions etc we, XXXXXXXXXX will make a recommendation/request to implement the change. Should there be non concurrence and different guidance given we would like to have it in writing in order to annotate in the file. We can set up whatever paperwork is required. We are on board just want to ensure the files are properly documented.]

Defense (Coombs)

Want to make sure 'every change discussed with the Boss'? Meaning 'Boss' Col. Choike or Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

I think I mean there is a context-- 10 March [2011] the way we were doing business I discuss-- forward report-- Lt. Gen Flynn made aware-- that is the context. Now phone call from XO Ebits (sp.)-- my point is that we have been doing it from this time.

Defense (Coombs)

So give me context. So, goes to Col. Choike, then discussed with Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

'Not sure why doing this'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Because it was being done this way-- it was very direct.

Defense (Coombs)

At this point?

Col. Robert Oltman

If there was to be a status change, that they would have to brief up-- So, Col. Choike-- his response-- put it back in context.

Defense (Coombs)

So, at this point you mean Col. Choike and not Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

That is the way I read this. I am out of the office, just from 'COC'[Chain of Command] perspective-- So, as I go through I am responding-- 'We have chain of command, why do we need to do it this way?'

Defense (Coombs)

You say, 'Understand where guidance is coming from, and we will...'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I mean this is my CO [Commanding Office] and I will do as directed.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Choike-- what you thought?

Col. Robert Oltman

I thought Col. Choike. Mean, 'Got it. You are the boss. I will do as you say.'

Defense (Coombs)

'...should there be nonconcurrence'? What did you mean?

Col. Robert Oltman

Exactly what I said-- Let's go back. 'Do your job. Don't worry about...' So, if that changed-- that was annotated.

Defense (Coombs)

Why?

Col. Robert Oltman

We prefer it in writing-- anything outside context shoulder...that document is out directive.

Defense (Coombs)

That way if you and CW2 Barnes...that Pfc. Manning...that would explain resource drain for example?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

So, let's talk about Col. Choike.

Col. Robert Oltman

Okay.

[This line of questions is referring to this email:

What you have listed below is on target. The instructions given to me were best passed on personally to XXXXXXXXXX, based upon the last two lengthy meetings with the [CG - Commanding General - Lt. Gen. Flynn]. I don't prefer this approach and would rather go through you, but your TAD trip and absence creates this situation. Much is lost in email missives.

I just got off the phone with XXXXXXXXXX and let her know about your email and the XXXXXXXXXX intent. I know how things go and what you have done in the past in terms of notifying me, I only ask/reconfirm that any decisions to change handling instructions or assignment status is briefed first, before executed.

Actions required to save life and/or protect from injury are not included in this for obvious reasons.

You and I supporting/concurring with the XXXXXXXXXX decisions that change handling instructions or assignment status, without passing that info to XXXXXXXXXX for consideration, is no longer acceptable. We/you are not going to get anything in writing from [CG - Commanding General Lt. Gen. Flynn] if he rejects/modifies a recommendation. Memo's for the record can be discussed more between you and I, in an effort to address your concerns about proper documentation/file keeping.

Summary - #1 - yes adhere to the chain of command, and hopefully you understand why that didn't happen right now. #2 Yes - recommendations forwarded to me for discussion and concurrence and then recommendation forwarded to [CG - Commanding General - Lt. Gen. Flynn] before implementation. I will not blindly forward a recommendation to the XXXXXXXXXX, instead I'll discuss it with you so you will know exactly what I forward. #3 Non-concurrence in writing - we need to discuss and determine the best way to document decision/final actions for the record. [CG - Commanding General Lt. Gen Flynn] wants to be able to determine political impact, media interest, legal ramifications, and senior leadership reactions, and can't do so without him being in the loop upfront.

SF, [Col. Choike]

PS- When do you get back?

]

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Choike says, '...last two lengthy...' is he referring to Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Choike indicate why?

Col. Robert Oltman

Special handeling instructions-- they had implemented change in his instructions. And he was tired-- and where he was general-- he had 'enough is enough'-- he was tired about hearing stuff from people...CG [Commanding General]-- in his chain of command-- instead of people at Quantico. [Regarding Lt. Gen. Flynn], he wanted to be able to shape information and brief his command-- so that when they learned from newspapers and the early bird.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed]...no longer acceptable without passing information up to Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

So, if CW4 Averhart-- CW2 Barnes makes recommendation [up to] Col. Choike [up to] Lt. Gen. Flynn 'concur/not concur'? Correct?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not sure if his concurrence-- but that he needed to be aware.

Defense (Coombs)

' We/you are not going to get anything in writing from [CG - Commanding General Lt. Gen. Flynn] if he rejects/modifies a recommendation'? So you were being informed that you were not going to get it in writing?

Col. Robert Oltman

...to implement that current change.

Defense (Coombs)

So, if it gets up to Lt. Gen. Flynn-- he modifies...new change?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

And, that would be Col. Choike and you follow?

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe that would require another meeting to take place. There would be a discussion before changes take place.

Defense (Coombs)

So, if Lt. Gen. Flynn said, "No,' and Col. Choike concurs, and Lt. Gen. Flynn...

Col. Robert Oltman

...make sure he [missed] and I would execute guidance.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.] So, if he concurs, nothing has to change?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

If he concurs with change, he doesn't need to put in writing-- 'by him saying he does not concur'-- he is concurring?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Okay. Let's talk about one little section. [Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Able to draw my own conclusion. Col. Choike-- [ensure that] he was receiving information coming from Brig and not chain of command.

Defense (Coombs)

Know his concern from political impact?

Col. Robert Oltman

Just implications if command had interest-- concerned...

Defense (Coombs)

Regarding Captain Hocter, forensic psychiatrist?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

he did not have strongest with me because he made individual not risk to self or others and we...accordingly...and he [Captain Webb] committed suicide...not trust-- I looked hard at Captain Hocter's recommendations.

Defense (Coombs)

Regarding detainee who committed suicide...

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

...'lost confidence'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I did not have utmost confidence in Captain Hocter.

Defense (Coombs)

Sit down with Captain Neill and Col. Choike-- Captain Neill was Captain Hocter's command?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Context was Captain Neill says Captain Hocter making recommendations that were being ignored. 'We are erring on the side of caution.' She was unaware of [the incident of Captain Webb's suicide].

Defense (Coombs)

'We are going to err on the side of...his muscle memory...'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I was going to be very cautious with guidance he gave.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Malone? Didn't trust [Col. Malone]?]

Col. Robert Oltman

Never said that I didn't trust.

Defense (Coombs)

'Underwear' incident? [Missed.] Recall?

Col. Robert Oltman

No...help jog memory.

Defense (Coombs)

[Appellate exhibit 418(c)] Col. Choike [regarding Col. Malone] 'not immediately available to Brig'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I'm still reading.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Malone immediately available?

Col. Robert Oltman

He was frustrated he doesn't reside at base-- work in Brig-- to follow protocol.

Defense (Coombs)

If they had--

Col. Robert Oltman

--I don't even know where Captain Hocter was in the process. He wasn't on email.

Defense (Coombs)

If you had trusted opinion more, would you have taken Pfc. Manning off of POI?

Col. Robert Oltman

The recommendation is one data point-- I am not sure we were ever able to communicate to him, and the information that he provided.

Defense (Coombs)

If you trusted him would it have carried more weight?

Col. Robert Oltman

But even credible recommendation-- it would have not changed outcome-- one data point.

Defense (Coombs)

So, if you had another doctor-- you indicated it's one data point...would not change?

Col. Robert Oltman

Based on behavior, etc. No.

Defense (Coombs)

So, didn't trust Captain Hocter-- Col. Malone not responsive more change...?

Col. Robert Oltman

I relied on all data points.

Defense (Coombs)

I know, but even with stronger recommendation-- would not have changed?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. But, I don't run the process. I did not make that decision. It was made by the C&A board.

Defense (Coombs)

I understand the C&A board....but [missed, explains] briefing up to Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

You had referenced a meeting, you had in January [2011]-- discuss Pfc. Manning, Captain Hocter present, [Captain Brian Moore, defense Forensic Psychiatrist?]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

SJA [Staff Judge Advocate]; CW2 Barnes; CW4 Averhart; and Brig staff?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Also, medical interns giving care to detainees.

[This line of questioning refers to the 13 January high level meeting at Quantico.]

Defense (Coombs)

And Captain Hocter explains detained...'Pfc. Manning with maintain...'? [According to my notes I believe that Coombs is quoting Captain Hocter quoting himself at this meeting.]

Col. Robert Oltman

'He will face allegations against him...and if keeping this in this status (enables that) that is what we are going to do.'

Defense (Coombs)

[You said], 'Nothing is going to change-- he won't be able to hurt himself....'

Col. Robert Oltman

I don't remember exactly . Sounds stronger than I would say. ...we would do...[missed].

Defense (Coombs)

'Nothing is going to change...' [repeats quote] What is stronger?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not sure I know where you are going with that.

Defense (Coombs)

A witness is going to testify, and I want to give you an opportunity to comment.

Col. Robert Oltman

That is probably pretty close.

Defense (Coombs)

Conversation got heated between you and Captain Hocter?

Col. Robert Oltman

I would say professional disagreement.

Defense (Coombs)

Recall him saying, 'Call it something else'? [NB full quote is 'You know Sir I am concerned because if you are going to do that maybe you want to call it something else because it is not based upon anything from behavioral health" and "Well then don't say it is based upon mental health You can say it is Maximum Custody and just don't put that we [behavioral health] are somehow involved in this']

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall.

Defense (Coombs)

Something you would have said?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed but affirmative.]

Defense (Coombs)

Would base on him, because didn't trust...?

Col. Robert Oltman

No. It was one data point. Captain Neill, Col. Choike, Brig staff, DSC [?], everyone.

Defense (Coombs)

Gunnery Sergeant Blenis, Master Sergeant Papakie, and Gunnery Sergeant Fuller?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't know who was there at this time.

Defense (Coombs)

DBS [Duty Brig Supervisor]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Changes on a daily basis. They are aware of handeling instructions-- nothing from doctor to tell them to do something different.

Defense (Coombs)

Heard this said? CW4 Averhart? [Referring to his disagreement and statement to Captain Hocter that 'We will do whatever we want to do You make a recommendation and then I have to make a decision based upon everything else" and "Well that is what we are going to do.']

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

CW2 Barnes?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Etc.?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. I have a relationship-- they knew Navy Captain and me-- professional discussion-- he is my peer [referring to their corresponding ranks in different branches of Armed Services.]

Defense (Coombs)

Let's talk...

Col. Robert Oltman

Board would meet-- talk to Pfc. Manning if he desired. That process was altered. Presented to Brig OIC [Officer in Charge]. She would either concur or not concur-- send report forward.

Defense (Coombs)

After they discussed custody...that would come up to you and you concurred?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct

Defense (Coombs)

And, you always concurred?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

'Erred on side of caution'?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

You said you were never 100 per cent sure-- gonna 'err on side of caution'?

Col. Robert Oltman

If we are in a quandary and this recommendation is made, 'We are gonna err on side of caution.'

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

Let's talk about SBC [?] and having discussion with Brig OIC. Why did you believe Pfc. Manning was on MAX?

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe because of all the factors the C&A board looked at.

Defense (Coombs)

Why did you believe MAX?

Col. Robert Oltman

I can't say that I ever went through process if he should be on MAX or not.

Defense (Coombs)

Why in your mind do you believe was appropriate MAX?

Col. Robert Oltman

Because in receiving weekly reports-- because there was not a development in a relationship of trust.

Defense (Coombs)

So, I am going to discuss 'non development of trust'? What else?

Col. Robert Oltman

The way he was acting--broken down during recreation call-- visibly upset.

Defense (Coombs)

January 18, 2011?

Col. Robert Oltman

Sounds correct. Way he interacted when given opportunity with counselor. Would not engage in conversation. Where he came from. I was not comfortable. Hadn't developed relationship.

Defense (Coombs)

'Non development of trust with counselor'? What do you recall?

Col. Robert Oltman

With stuff-- meal etc. would not engage-- only talk when spoken to-- people being able to read and understand-- would not give opinion.

Defense (Coombs)

This in notes...'he was quiet, courteous, and respectful'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

'Never received adverse evaluations'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

'Average work...'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Gunnery Sergeant Blenis, 'quite but always polite'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

So, going from September time frame from Captain Hocter month after month until December-- what were you seeing in reports?

Col. Robert Oltman

I saw someone going through the motions.

Defense (Coombs)

Possible, he is just quiet?

Col. Robert Oltman

Could be.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

...or his counselor. In total context-- how we got [him-- when he came his initial interview, 'always planning...' that influences-- always watching, very intelligence from reports [of] counselor. I see someone going through the motions.

Defense (Coombs)

After arrival?

Col. Robert Oltman

He was on suicide risk where he was.

Defense (Coombs)

When he came to you?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Captain Hocter confirmed was suicide risk?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

believed could improve?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

What were you seeing that Captain Hocter [wasn't]...?

Col. Robert Oltman

I did not know how Pfc. Manning was interacting with Captain Hocter.

Defense (Coombs)

Anything else?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

January 18, 2010. recall what happened?

Col. Robert Oltman

CW4 Averhart....that had been incident with Pfc. Manning-- taking him to rec call-- fallen backwards-- fainted when removing restraints. He pulled away went to equipment, started crying. They called in DBS [Duty Brig Supervisor], Staff NCOIC [Non Commissioned Officer in Charge]-- called in-- got Pfc. Manning to calm down.

Defense (Coombs)

[Are you aware] reported [guards] were rough with him?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Second guard relieved of duty by DBS after, aware?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Anyone tell you there was concern had anxiety attack because of guards, aware?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Allowed to complete rec call?

Col. Robert Oltman

His request.

Defense (Coombs)

What else happened?

Col. Robert Oltman

CW4 Averhart sat down to get his perspective. Pfc. Manning got upset-- started to hit head and get himself worked up.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

I know what I know from the Article 138.

Defense (Coombs)

What is that?

Col. Robert Oltman

CW4 Averhart asserted his authority.

Defense (Coombs)

Recall Pfc. Manning asking, 'Why am I on POI....?' 'I'll do anything...'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall those words. I do know that he wanted to be taken off based on paperwork.

Defense (Coombs)

What happens after?

Col. Robert Oltman

CW4 Averhart put him on suicide risk and called psychiatrist over.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

He recommended that he not be on suicide risk, but POI.

Defense (Coombs)

Recall only 24 hour POI?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Chief Averhart kept him on suicide risk in spite of recommendation from Brig psychiatrist?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

He had a history of assault, start off with that-- it is a categorical determination, 'risk to self and others.'

Defense (Coombs)

During time at Quantico, Pfc. Manning try to assault guard or [other] detainees?

Col. Robert Oltman

No. He had no contact with other detainees.

Defense (Coombs)

Never attempted escape?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Except 18 January [2011] incident, when upset...no violent?

Col. Robert Oltman

No that I am aware.

Defense (Coombs)

Anytime not compliant with guards from July 29 onwards?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Agrees with Coombs]...anytime non compliant.

Defense (Coombs)

So, when you look at MAX POI, consider the seriousness of the charges?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

How so?

Col. Robert Oltman

Based on alleged [charges]. Yes, that is a factor.

Defense (Coombs)

How did you factor?

Col. Robert Oltman

He was unable to be detained where he was.

Defense (Coombs)

I mean the seriousness of the charges.

Col. Robert Oltman

I understand, but I look at whole context. He was too much of a problem...couldn't handle him [in Kuwait]. Seriousness of the charges or suicide risk. There was no real understanding-- [he] refused to discuss those things with counselor. [We didn't understand] what Pfc. Manning was about.

Defense (Coombs)

Because of these MAX appropriate? [Missed alternate.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Both.

Defense (Coombs)

You indicated 'too much of a problem [in Kuwait'?]

Col. Robert Oltman

That was related to us.

Defense (Coombs)

Anytime before, did you indicate [to anyone] too much of a problem?

Col. Robert Oltman

We reiterated that we did not think he should be kept [at Quantico]. 1.) Just transfered to 'Level 1' facility. 2.) Not in best condition...lighting needed repair-- could do core function to be brought up-- needed work [missed].

Defense (Coombs)

High profile?

Col. Robert Oltman

I mean it was on the news.

Defense (Coombs)

And if you messed up it would be noticed?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Made aware-- Lt. Gen. Flynn-- Gen. Dumford (sp), as Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps; Gen. Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps; Secretary [of Defense Robert] Gates...?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

Ever briefed [missed].

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Obviously didn't want anything bad to happen on his watch. MAX not because he was a risk, but high profile?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Why not?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not a consideration-- focus was...not where we started.

Defense (Coombs)

So, no possibility-- 'err on the side of caution'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I erred because of-- I didn't want any detainee to die on my watch.

COURT IN RECESS

COURT CALLED TO ORDER

Defense (Coombs)

Recall CW5 Galaviz conducted investigation in response to Article 138?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Found violation of SECNAV?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

You said, 'minor violations'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Violations are violations.

Defense (Coombs)

[Appellate exhibit 419(d)].

Col. Robert Oltman

Okay.

Defense (Coombs)

See where you ask CW2 Barnes-- ask minor violations?

Col. Robert Oltman

I may have-- I don't have corrections background-- trying to see if a big deal or not.

Defense (Coombs)

Even CW2 Barnes agrees once doctor says [removal from suicide risk, must happen immediately]?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

'Once the MO [Medical Officer] ventured whatever...' he was on before...'what DBS specifically move to POI'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

Did you have a conversation with CW2 Barnes about that?

Col. Robert Oltman

I just asked on a scale of one to ten...where resided. She said, 'it's a violation'...[missed].

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Not serious, no number.

Defense (Coombs)

March 2-- regarding [removal of underwear] remember?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed] of additional charges-- cognizant of anything that may change, 'If I were gonna kill myself...'

Defense (Coombs)

Who briefed?

Col. Robert Oltman

CW2 Barnes

Defense (Coombs)

Did you know who Pfc. Manning...suicide...Master Sergeant Papakie?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Did CW2 Barnes tell you he was discussing the absurdity of POI?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recollect.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed]

Col. Robert Oltman

She said his response was 'defiant in tone.' Like, 'If I wanted to kill myself...'

Defense (Coombs)

[Did you know] he was smiling [at the time he said it]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't know. Didn't ask.

Defense (Coombs)

Joking?

Col. Robert Oltman

My question-- my question given status he was in why joke...engage in no conversation...shares no emotion. Not sure why he would [missed] no comment/

Defense (Coombs)

Were you told...[Coombs explains], 'If I wanted to harm...'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not in that detail.

Defense (Coombs)

You weren't told idle comment as joke?

Col. Robert Oltman

Conversation was, 'could be nothing,' but 'could be something.'

Defense (Coombs)

Did you push into why with idle comment?

Col. Robert Oltman

In inspection of comment, whether she thought feasible...

Defense (Coombs)

Why?

Col. Robert Oltman

Because you could strangle yourself...if he thought could be.

Defense (Coombs)

Talk to doctors? '?

Col. Robert Oltman

Doctors said wasn't serious-- 'intellectualizing.'

Defense (Coombs)

Consider?

Col. Robert Oltman

I took into account, but with relationship that did or did not exist between detainee and staff...

'Err on the side of caution'?

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

[Appellate exhibit 419(e)] Lt. Col. Greer?

Col. Robert Oltman

Bottom?

Defense (Coombs)

First page.

Col. Robert Oltman

Bottom is Col. Choike.

Defense (Coombs)

Above that. Lt. Col. Greer [Staff Judge Advocate] to Col. Choike....Col. Mark Kauzlarich [Marine Corps Base Quantico] Chief of Staff?

Col. Robert Oltman

'This may become media issue, as Pfc. Manning may bring up with attorney.'

Defense (Coombs)

Lt. Col. Greer is saying this in regards to '[removal of] underwear'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Choike does Dr. Seuss? ['I can wear them in a box. I can wear them with a fox. I can wear them in the day. I can wear them so I say. But I can't wear them at night. My comments gave the staff a fright...']

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Thought that was funny?

Col. Robert Oltman

I thought it was interesting. I was joking that in the context'ing of that, Col. Choike would put it as that.

Defense (Coombs)

Do you think it was funny Pfc. Manning was stripped?

Col. Robert Oltman

No, I did not.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

Pfc. Manning 'mumbling'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Documenting everything he would do.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Malone down to see Pfc. Manning because he was being read charges that day?

Col. Robert Oltman

Make sure...[missed].

Defense (Coombs)

[Col. Malone was] suppose to see him on March 4, 2011?

Col. Robert Oltman

Next scheduled visit, yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Two days after? [Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.] Concern-- not sure how he would respond.

Defense (Coombs)

Handing witness appellate exhibit 419(c). [Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Couldn't get ahold of [Col. Malone]...scheduled visit.

Defense (Coombs)

Based on speaking with him, might have lead to making comment?

Col. Robert Oltman

My direct feelings-- Chief of Staff-- asked they were not comfortable-- they could not get him [Col. Malone] when they felt they needed him-- added to the frustration.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Mark Kauzlarich [Marine Corps Base Quantico] Chief of Staff not a psychiatrist was gonna be....'death penalty...'?

[Coombs is referring to this email:

Need your assistance.

Unfortunately, [Col. Choike] and I are not comfortable with the plan. I'm not a psychiatrist; however, if one of my very vulnerable patients, who has been on suicide watch before, was going to be informed of 22 new charges and one of them holds the death penalty, maybe-just-maybe I'd be standing by to assist that patient. Sorry for venting my frustration with sarcasm.

]

Col. Robert Oltman

That is what it says.

Defense (Coombs)

Col. Malone got on...March 4, 2011?

Col. Robert Oltman

My guess, he wasn't a risk-- don't have his report in front of me.

Defense (Coombs)

Didn't believe in an specific requirement [based on Pfc. Manning's mental health and the referral or additional charges.]

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe...not sure of term. Don't recall.

Defense (Coombs)

Retrieving appellate exhibit 419(c). Appellate exhibit 419(f). See where Col. Choike asks you, 'leave as is...instant same'

[Coombs is referring to this 4 March 2011 email:

Mental Health visit by [Col. Maline] is complete. This initial report came from XXXXXXXXXX, XXXXXXXXXX and the XXXXXXXXXX, who was just debriefed by XXXXXXXXXX this afternoon after his visit with Manning. PFC Manning is doing well, appeared in good spirits and has been taken off a medication for an anxiety disorder, the removal is in response to his improved status. His recent actions and statements are not related any mental disorder.

Initial report from XXXXXXXXXX - the XXXXXXXXXX is going to leave Manning in the same status (POI) and his handling instructions will remain the same for the immediate future; meaning he will only have his blankets from Taps to Reveille. XXXXXXXXXX and CW2 Barnes discussed at length the situation and XXXXXXXXXX will continue to review his behavior/actions and review the recommendations of the C&A Board. The C&A Board goes every Friday ... so he will remain 'as is' for now ... but, handling instructions can be changed at any time, based upon his observed ongoing behavior.

Manning's recent comments and behavior have the entire Brig Staff concerned, and they are trying to only add minimal precautionary measures necessary, that will allow him to have some space and reduce the stress, while protecting him/keeping him safe.

]

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

You said, she and I talked at length'...no time line?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

And she never did change 'handeling instructions' for the remained [of Pfc. Manning's] time [at Quantico]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Caused a lot of media controversy at Quantico?

Col. Robert Oltman

Anything causing scrutiny

Defense (Coombs)

But, this in particular?

Col. Robert Oltman

Caused a lot of chatter...

Defense (Coombs)

[Appellate exhibit 419(g)] Second page...Lt. Col. Wright Headquarters PPO [Law Enforcement and Corrections, Plans, Policies, and Operations]? That is where Lt. Col. Wright worked?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Marine Corp subject matter expert?

Col. Robert Oltman

One, yes.

Defense (Coombs)

PSL [Law Enforcement & Corrections (PSL) page for Plans, Policies & Operations (PP&O)]...'we have concerns [about the decision] made by the Commanding Officer of the Brig...[removing underwear] but not officially placing in suicide [risk status]...we understand...but if we are doing business [right]...there is nothing we can do anything about...'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Pfc. Manning never said he would do anything [NB this question mans, as in kill himself]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. That is what she wrote in the email.

Defense (Coombs)

...Pfc. Manning never said he would commit suicide?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

Not erratic?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

And, smiling when talking to Master Sergeant Papakie?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

And would not qualify for suicide risk?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. 'SECNAV states I can remove clothing when I deem necessary...'

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

What provision does she cite?

Col. Robert Oltman

SECNAV [missed, but it is 4205.5(a) "Prisoners who have threatened suicide or have made a suicide gesture but are found fit for confinement may be placed within special quarters under continuous observation while in the category of suicide risk. CO/OIC/CPOIC may direct removal of prisoner's clothing when deemed necessary." CW2 Barnes later admits that she did not have authority under this regulation because Pfc. Manning was not on suicide risk.]

Defense (Coombs)

Did you ask her what authority?

Col. Robert Oltman

I did not. ...trust Brig OIC...appropriate when necessary.

Defense (Coombs)

She says that she could not justify not taking any action...?

Col. Robert Oltman

After he made comment...this was enough rational to. All fits together, if that is piece taken...[Pfc. Manning] not enough rapport with others. That foundation was not there.

Defense (Coombs)

Did you pull the SEVNAV?

Col. Robert Oltman

...to go back to...

Defense (Coombs)

Do you pull SECNAV file?

Col. Robert Oltman

I don't have it memorized.

Defense (Coombs)

Respond to email [from CW2 Barnes]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall.

Defense (Coombs)

Did you call [her]?

Col. Robert Oltman

If I didn't respond, it means call.

Defense (Coombs)

You have subject matter expert giving guidance in contradiction of CW2 Barnes...?

Col. Robert Oltman

He gave a 30,000 foot level...never deal with Pfc. Manning, etc.

Defense (Coombs)

He is a proponent of the SECNAV...?

Col. Robert Oltman

I took this...[missed].

Defense (Coombs)

...get guy [sit?] down together?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Defense (Coombs)

Took the word of CW2 Barnes?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Call Lt. Col. Wright?

Col. Robert Oltman

No. Took at opinion. He provided opinions on other [missed].

Defense (Coombs)

Was he wrong?

Col. Robert Oltman

I never researched whether he was wrong.

RECESS CALLED

COURT CALLED TO ORDER

Defense (Coombs)

You said Lt. Col. Wright and CW2 Barnes...last thing you said is that Lt. Col. Wright [giving] 30,000 foot level...?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

You would agree regarding SECNAV INstructions...opine...taking steps inconsistent with SECNAV?

Col. Robert Oltman

Believe what he said.

Defense (Coombs)

'Not how we do business'?

Col. Robert Oltman

What he said, agree.

Defense (Coombs)

Multiple inquiries via media in regards-- [Col. Timothy V.] Johnson, PAO [Pubic Affairs Office] comments people were going to weigh in on responses to the press? You weighed in on one?

Col. Robert Oltman

Have to see email.

Defense (Coombs)

[Appellate exhibit 419(h)] Media inquiry...Col. Timothy V. Johnson asked Lt. Gen. Flynn and yourself to give feedback?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

You recommend, 'Keeping first-- delete second'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Hold on. Have to read. Correct. I [believed?], 'detainee...guided by SECNAV' sufficient for response.

Defense (Coombs)

Retrieving 419(i). Opining on email, not out of the ordinary?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

5 March [2011]-- You, Col. Mark Kauzlarich [Marine Corps Base Quantico Chief of Staff]...AP [Associated Press] [piece?], '[1st Lt. Scott] Villiard [Quantico spokesperson] sounded knowledgable and objective'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

You were concurring with his response with the Blackberry article?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't have the article in front of me. '[1st Lt. Scott] Villiard [Quantico spokesperson] sounded knowledgable and objective'

Defense (Coombs)

What do you mean, 'I am biased'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I said I was biased. I have to go to the article.

Defense (Coombs)

[Appellate exhibit (?)] Let's talk about some of the things that made this case different. Pfc. Manning mail coming to the Brig?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Report...larger....how much mail-- How much.

Defense (Coombs)

Not normal to receive mail []?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

Protests disruptive to general operations at Quantico?

Col. Robert Oltman

It's hard for protests on the center of the base or-- not disruptive.

Defense (Coombs)

How?

Col. Robert Oltman

Took focus away from normal operations. Traffic at the gate...I believe front gate...traffic re-routed...disruptive.

Defense (Coombs)

Aware Brig receiving phone calls?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Not everyone-- no secret. IG [Inspector General] getting phone calls-- phone calls from everywhere.

Defense (Coombs)

Whether or not [missed], some phone calls threatening to Quantico Brig?

Col. Robert Oltman

One instance-- in regards to CW2 Barnes-- information about where her family lived-- only one I recollect. All those recorded and forwarded to appropriate agency.

Defense (Coombs)

Steps required?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not to my recollection.

Defense (Coombs)

Prominent figures would come to Brig or did come-- Michael Moore, Daniel Ellsberg?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't remember those names, but took several folks through the Brig.

Defense (Coombs)

What do you recall about Michael Moore?

Col. Robert Oltman

He was going to film something-- discussions with Public Affairs Office. We were not going [missed] anything like that with the Brig.

Defense (Coombs)

What security concerns?

Col. Robert Oltman

Quantico is an open base...as long as you have a value 10-- 7 approved credentials [NB so, this means you can have different types of ID, each carries a certain valuation], you are not denied access. Normal security checks-- so to my knowledge, those things still continue to take place-- no different coming to Brig and getting on base. If something happens, we knew when leaving and when coming back.

Defense (Coombs)

Army CID [Criminal Investigation Command] place audio recording in visitation booths to record any visit with Pfc. manning not with counsel?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Reason is standard. Our Brig not equipped in that manner...

[NB The following are tenants at Marine Corp Base Quantico: Defense Intelligence Agency; Drug Enforcement Administration training academy, FBI Academy, the principal research and training facility of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the principal training facility for the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) are also located on the base; FBI Hostage Rescue Team (HRT); FBI Laboratory; Naval Criminal Investigative Service Headquarters, Army CID Headquarters, AFOSI Headquarters.]

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed question regarding Department of Defense.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

Lots of press about Pfc. Manning confinement?

Col. Robert Oltman

If you say so.

Defense (Coombs)

Aware [PBS] Frontline wanted to interview CW2 Barnes?

Col. Robert Oltman

Traffic kind of hard-- abundance to sift through-- can't recollect...even at this time. I have a daily newspaper-- I didn't go out seeking information.

Defense (Coombs)

Remember [missed] Col. Choike-- piece that [PBS] Frontline did on Pfc. manning's father?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall.

Defense (Coombs)

Visits by high level IG [Inspector Generals] Army, Navy, CW5 Galaviz?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not sure I would put [CW5 Galaviz] in same category as IG.

Defense (Coombs)

Major General Arri (sp.)?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Mr. Hogue (sp.) counsel to the commandant. I believe Army general...apologize for not remembering names.

Defense (Coombs)

Coming down to see Pfc. Manning?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Amnesty International?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recall. Seems logical.

Defense (Coombs)

Recall Lt. Gen. Flynn, Col. Choike, and Captain Neill pushing for 24/7 mental health?

Col. Robert Oltman

I do.

Defense (Coombs)

This is a case that placed a lot of drain on resources?

Col. Robert Oltman

We tried to accomodate-- there are transparent [missed], except for marches and protests.

Defense (Coombs)

Having Pfc. manning at Brig a drain on resources?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Everyone knew not an ordinary case?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

Some visits-- remember [Mr. Greg] Strobel, [retired USMC warrant officer, now a civilian operations officer,] Army Corrections Command-- January 2012 [Coombs probably mean 2011]?

Col. Robert Oltman

I don't. [Next statement missed.] ...'independent assessment'

Defense (Coombs)

'Given recent email...' you no longer felt [Mr. Greg] Strobel, [retired USMC warrant officer, now a civilian operations officer, Army Corrections] visit required?

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe, 'no longer required.'

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed quote of email by David Coombs.] Why didn't you want [Mr. Greg] Strobel, [retired USMC warrant officer, now a civilian operations officer, Army Corrections] to come?

Col. Robert Oltman

Already responded to-- only reason bringing assessment in...

Defense (Coombs)

Only reason?

Col. Robert Oltman

If you are going to hand me something in-- if you are going to hand me something to look at. Not sure I remember who Mr. Strobel is...where he fit into process...any prior experience with Brig.

Defense (Coombs)

[Hands exhibit.] ...forwarded 'Open to anyone who want to see it...but independent [missed]...difference [Pfc. Manning's defense will] exploit in press'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I see it. Everything we did ended up in the press-- then people wanted to come down.

Defense (Coombs)

Concerned individuals come to different conclusions, afraid I would exploit it?

Col. Robert Oltman

I am not convinced that would not have been exploited. ...amount of information coming in.

Defense (Coombs)

See Col. Choike's response, 'need to stress concurrence'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Between first part OSD [Office of the Secretary of Defense] evaluation...

Defense (Coombs)

Col. [Shawn] Shumake [Director, Legal Policy at United States Department of Defense]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Col. Choike's perspective-- [I notated, DODY, but I am not sure what that is, It may have been phonetic, and could be a department of defense directives DODD?] [missed].

Defense (Coombs)

Did you know, 'sure he would have done everything right'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Did not [missed]. I can't speak to Col. Choike though. We already had assessment from Army IG [Inspector General] and one other satisfied with what they had seen-- didn't see reason to bring in another.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.] ...your response to Col. Choike?

Col. Robert Oltman

May...[missed].

[NB These questions concern 'armchair quarter backs not welcome' statement by Col. Choike in an email exchange]

Defense (Coombs)

Did you think [Mr. Greg] Strobel, [retired USMC warrant officer, now a civilian operations officer, Army Corrections] was an 'armchair quarterback'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Another person we are gonna have to guide through Brig-- already assessed two times-- IG [Inspector General] Army-- IG Marine Corp.

Defense (Coombs)

Two assessments?

Col. Robert Oltman

previous IG Army and IG Marines Corps, based on Pfc. Manning.

Defense (Coombs)

...weren't talking 'blank', just look at...no further. [Not clear from my note what this means.]

DEFENSE ENDS EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

COURT IN RECESS

COURT CALLED TO ORDER

PROSECUTION CROSS-EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

Prosecution (Fein)

Command structure on base?

Col. Robert Oltman

Marine Corp command around 215 [soldiers?], 100 civilians, responsible to base command-- MP [Military Police], Brig, Fire and EMS [Emergency Services]. Three companies. 1.) Brig-- Chief Warrant Officer; 2.) MP-- Military Police Captain; 3.) [Missed.] All report to me.

Prosecution (Fein)

Who is higher headquarters?

Col. Robert Oltman

Col. Choike and base supported Marine Corps Combat Development Command (MCCDC) headed by Lt. Gen. Flynn.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Quantico has an] O-6 with an O-6 commander?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

Prior to arrival, typical interaction with Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

Copied on a few emails-- come to command-- knew some issues [missed]. Check on command-- report to him, 'deaths,...'.

Prosecution (Fein)

Like Captain Webb's suicide?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

You said, 'a couple of times'?

Col. Robert Oltman

July 2009 to July 2011.

Prosecution (Fein)

About one year before Pfc. Manning, under Col. Choike and Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

yes. That command relationship existed-- drove dynamic-- change a little at [missed] and [Marine Corps Combat Development Command] MCCDC operations [missed].

Prosecution (Fein)

With Pfc. Manning, how many times contacted by Lt. Gen. Flynn?

Col. Robert Oltman

A dozen time, not always direct.

Prosecution (Fein)

Aware what Col. Choike did or did not do?

Col. Robert Oltman

...keeping information open...but also to Col. Choike.

Prosecution (Fein)

Moving pieces...?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

Don't know what pieces, like weekly reports?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

You don't know reports were forwarded, but that 'he was briefed'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I know I forwarded to Col. Choike.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

Did you receive RFI [request for Information] from above?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

From Col. Choike's command level?

Col. Robert Oltman

They all filtered through him [missed].

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Direct decision making process, you never decided on classification [of Pfc. Manning]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

You reviewed, not signed off or concurred after decision made [on Pfc. Manning classification]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Your choice not to [missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

Any member would be given a lawful order?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

no one from your level up to [missed], ever made determination [as to Pfc. manning's classification and status]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

When CW4 Averhart decided to place Pfc. Manning on suicide risk and remove him prior, without your concurrence?

Col. Robert Oltman

[He did not consult with me.] He made decision.

Prosecution (Fein)

First time you met CW4 Averhart?

Col. Robert Oltman

He reported a year earlier. He showed up August or September same year...I was short officer-- [CW4 Averhart was his] S3, so operations officer in Battalion.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

How long?

Col. Robert Oltman

Four to six months-- end of January...four to five months.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

When I came in there was no S3...been a while since we were inspected...one of the things I did was to make sure everyone was inspected to ensure that we were-- not to find out if what we were doing is wrong, but to make sure [we had resources met]. CW4 Averhart was the actions officer.

Prosecution (Fein)

So, he did not have to go to the Brig?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

When did you meet CW2 Barnes?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.] She came to Okinawa.

Prosecution (Fein)

Were there any changes to his status? Remember every handeling instruction?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Prosecution (Fein)

Considering CW2 Barnes gave more privileges after December made...?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

You testified a hypothetical. Lt. Gen Flynn could b making decision-- 'could', but any command officer could?

Col. Robert Oltman

yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Did every detainee have three hot meals?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Health support everyday?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Mental health every week?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. [Elaborates, but I missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

Proper exercise equipment?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Resources-- you still dedicated to accomplishing mission?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Order not to have underwear 'at night' because of comment 'commit suicide'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Prosecution (Fein)

Like saying bomb at TSA [Transportation Security Administration]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct/

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Regarding when Col. Choike tried to get ahold of Col. Malone] when we reached out to get him...

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

Other than that incident, aware of when mental health not available?

Col. Robert Oltman

...nothing, except that case...from review and reports.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

Including culminating even Col. Malone went to Fort Leavenworth on plane with Pfc. Manning?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't recollect.

Prosecution (Fein)

Many tours...CW5 Galaviz, and assistant secretary of defense, and lawyer?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

Did anyone of them other than CW5 Galaviz regarding Article 138-- make complaint? [Not sure if I transcribed this one accurately.]

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

They were privy to the details not public?

Col. Robert Oltman

They were taken in and shown how policy handled [explains door to be able...security operation. Not clear from my noted if he was saying the door to the observation booth adjacent to Pfc. Manning's cell.]

Prosecution (Fein)

How often visit Brig?

Col. Robert Oltman

Often [Elaborates, missed.]

Prosecution (Fein)

[Did you] meet with detainees?

Col. Robert Oltman

If they were new...primary is deserters...or be out in thirty days or less [missed.] As I would walk out...why he was there...promulgate a few questions.

Prosecution (Fein)

You said, chow [down at the Brig] two times a month?

Col. Robert Oltman

Ate with Chief Warrant Officer if he or she [was] on deck-- operations chief. Off-going DBS [Duty Brig Supervisor] for lack of a better term-- Master Sergeant accessible, program chief, administrative chief, as far as Marines-- so if someone was in chow hall...[but] would not talk with them [missed].

Prosecution (Fein)

Most senior official to interact with Brig?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct assessment.

Prosecution (Fein)

Meet with Pfc. Manning?

Col. Robert Oltman

Initial conversation like other detainees. If he was there, I would see him. Along the lines of, 'Getting what you need?'...As time went on [missed statement].

Prosecution (Fein)

How many times?

Col. Robert Oltman

No more than a dozen times.

Prosecution (Fein)

Pfc. Manning never told you he was being mistreated?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

Never knew he was being mistreated from defense counsel and medical [staff] inside the Brig?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Prosecution (Fein)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

PROSECUTION ENDS CROSS EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

DEFENSE RE-EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

Defense (Coombs)

You indicated Lt. Gen. Flynn after uptake-- uptick with Pfc. Manning?

Col. Robert Oltman

Contact with Lt. Gen. Flynn same [with Pfc. Manning] as year with prior.

Defense (Coombs)

But have email chains?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

Frequent increase once Pfc. Manning arrived?

Col. Robert Oltman

Given that we have discussions, have to determine that would be normally.

Defense (Coombs)

On direct and phone you said you knew reports were getting to Lt. Gen. Flynn. you said, you 'may not know sun is going to come up...but based on experience probably gonna come up.'

Col. Robert Oltman

[Affirmative.]

Defense (Coombs)

Government question...no reason to change [classification or status] if you agree with it...?

Col. Robert Oltman

The basis of the decision is what is presented to me.

Defense (Coombs)

[But you had authority] if what they are doing is appropriate, you don't need to make a directive?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

You don't joke about suicide?

Col. Robert Oltman

Correct.

Defense (Coombs)

But you joked about taking his underwear off? [Referring to Col. Robert Oltman's response to Col. Choike's stament in an email chain 'I can wear them in a box. I can wear them with a fox. I can wear them in the day. I can wear them so I say. But I can't wear them at night. My comments gave the staff a fright...']

Col. Robert Oltman

Took seriously.

Defense (Coombs)

And you ended that [exchange] with, 'Sam I am'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Recall...again assume where what-- you weren't there, didn't see and I came up to you...you know how the comment came up...if you were Master Sergeant Papakie..., 'Hey, what do I need to do to get off of POI?' You respond, '...underwear'-- that train of conversation?

Col. Robert Oltman

I would have to be there, and you are hearing what you hear-- that is where we are.

Defense (Coombs)

[Tells Col. Oltman conversations between Master Sergeant Papakie and Pfc. Manning. See defense Article 13 Motion for transcript -- 'would that alarm you'?

Col. Robert Oltman

Specifics as it relates to this situation...not mutual trist between detainee and staff regarding intent. I would err on the side of caution-- track record at Brig was not spotless.

Defense (Coombs)

If detainee...everything looked at used [as basis of] harm...might cut back [on interaction with Brig staff]?

Col. Robert Oltman

I could see that...early on initial conversation no different.

Defense (Coombs)

Gunnery Sergeant Blenis said he was quite?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Col. Oltman recounts the first C&A (Classification & Assignment) board that Pfc. Manning attended.] ...Where would we be if something happened to Pfc. Manning.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

If something were to happen, higher command would ask you questions?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

I was present for tours...Brig OIC-- asked questions, they thank[ed] for visit. I never received anything [missed].

Defense (Coombs)

Basically an hour long tour? tour consisted of chow hall, etc.

Col. Robert Oltman

...visitor booth, [missed]...

Defense (Coombs)

One way mirror [in the observation booth]-- [see] Pfc. Manning in the observation booth?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

That was extent?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Defense (Coombs)

Weren't asking any questions to...show my belief to get eyes on...[The audio was cut to the press pool.]

[MISSED A FEW QUESTIONS DUE TO THE AUDIO BEING CUT TO THE PRESS POOL FOR SEVERAL MINUTES]

...

Col. Robert Oltman

...they were designed [to] report in the press...to get first hand, not in solitary confinement.

Defense (Coombs)

What does solitary confinement mean?

Col. Robert Oltman

Resembles disciplinary area....cell with steel door...segregation from rest of population-- everyone in sane type of cell.

Defense (Coombs)

but, everyone wasn't forced to eat in cell?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Handling instructions.

Defense (Coombs)

[Missed]

Col. Robert Oltman

Everyone ate with a spoon.

Defense (Coombs)

So, when they toured the cafeteria, Pfc. Manning never ate there?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed]

Defense (Coombs)

And, if you are detained [missed] eating meal with spoon in cell? What is the difference? [Missed. NB Coombs is trying to illustrating through this line of questions that the application was similar to solitary confinement, even if the the label is not, 'solitary confinement'.]

Col. Robert Oltman

If there were an other MAX, they would consume in same way.

Defense (Coombs)

You were asked questions about 'underwear'-- facts came from defense?

Col. Robert Oltman

No. Major Fein... ...CW2 Barnes told me, he had made the comment.

Defense (Coombs)

What did she tell you about stripping?

Col. Robert Oltman

...never expected he [missed]. I was not there...tell him to take appropriate action to cover himself.

Defense (Coombs)

Required to cover himself?

Col. Robert Oltman

That is my understanding-- 5 am Reveille.

Defense (Coombs)

Did you know he tried to cover himself, told to put it away?

Col. Robert Oltman

Did not know that.

Defense (Coombs)

If the intent wasn't to have him strip naked...?

Col. Robert Oltman

DBS should say, 'Cover yourself.'

Defense (Coombs)

Expect him to do that, he would have been written up?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

DEFENSE ENDS RE-EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

JUDGE LING EXAMINATION OF Col. ROBERT OLTMAN

Judge Lind

How many inmates 2010, 2011?

Col. Robert Oltman

No more than 12--morning count six-- top 10-- again process, ...deserters to be processed out.

Judge Lind

...other than my recollection of pretrial detainees, you have transferred to pretrial facility in 2010 or 2009?

Col. Robert Oltman

It was 'Level 1' before my time...I believe they would process them [pretrial detainees] as well.

Judge Lind

During your tenure-- longest pretrial detainee at Quantico?

Col. Robert Oltman

Maybe, two months.

Judge Lind

Describe notice you got when Pfc. Manning [arrived]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Maybe email-- Col. Choike ...[going to] get Pfc. Manning-- sent two or three page packet-- outlined charges alleged to have committed-- medical... commander. That was it. Minimal information. The big thing that we were concerned was getting him out of there in 30 days.

Judge Lind

Tell me more. Got notice that you were receiving [Pfc. Manning]?

Col. Robert Oltman

They were not seeking feasibility [ of his being detained at Quantico], but that he was [missed].

Judge Lind

Not sure...CW5 Galaviz... You never called to counsel?

Col. Robert Oltman

We called them, we made aware [NB concerns about feasibility].

Judge Lind

When you called Marines Corp Corrections what...?

Col. Robert Oltman

We tried to get more information. Call made by CW4 Averhart...through Army trying to get parameters.

Judge Lind

Successul?

Col. Robert Oltman

To some extent and not prior to arrival. He was in facility at least a week before we got information.

Judge Lind

Learned he had fashioned noose?

Col. Robert Oltman

In packet and discussed with Pfc. Manning and Gunnery Sergeant Blenis during indoctrination.

Judge Lind

You testified other detainees stayed two months or less?

Col. Robert Oltman

To be past 30 days is more or less not normal. Most people we get are not pretrial. They are deserters...processing them and getting them out the door... There are also post confinement. They stay-- temporary-- for Court, but stay elsewhere-- less than 30 days. [He gives and example] There was an officer candidate school...he stayed past 30 days. We don't have long term service-- only support to be 30 days or less.

Judge Lind

Something in writing?

Col. Robert Oltman

No-- but from a pretrial perspective.

Judge Lind

[Missed.] ...longer than six months?

Col. Robert Oltman

MAX detainee more requirements moving that individual than someone not in POI. We would continually evaluate where we were. If we had two MAX we would not be taking any more detainees. I went from a structure of 79 to 44-- because predicate not suppose to be there long time. [Missed.]

Judge Lind

In words of... pretrial detention do confinement...SECNAV provide for different program long term?

Col. Robert Oltman

Don't know-- just from discussions with staff. [Missed.]

Judge Lind

[Missed.]

Col. Robert Oltman

MAX and MDI [Medium In], I believe.

Judge Lind

In same place?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Judge Lind

Describe? Facility...?

Col. Robert Oltman

Kept in special quarters.

Judge Lind

Who?

Col. Robert Oltman

Anyone who comes to facility based on Pfc. Manning footprint. So there are two open squad bays...then there is special quarters areas. Horse-shoe type fashion-- cells walk down...pass through and this wall facing in...duty [missed]-- forst three or four... Special quarters disciplinary...door-- steel door...glass portal. Disciplinary used one or two time since I was in command. Some individual report in and given instructions...so there is a process to get them to be compliant. He [Pfc. Manning] was not in special quarters of disciplinary.

Judge Lind

[Missed regarding observation booth.]

Col. Robert Oltman

For most part, detainees cannot see.

Judge Lind

Describe TV call?

Col. Robert Oltman

Mobile TV where he could see in his cell.

Judge Lind

Does not watch with others?

Col. Robert Oltman

No.

Judge Lind

Sunshine call?

Col. Robert Oltman

Outside facility, but inside wire.

Judge Lind

SECNAV [Instructions]-- how much sunshine call time?

Col. Robert Oltman

Can't speak for sure.

Judge Lind

How much did he get?

Col. Robert Oltman

20 minutes.

Judge Lind

PT program...[missed]?

Col. Robert Oltman

They are given rec [recreation] call. No prescribed program...it's inside wire area...half a basket-ball court. [Inside] Weight lifting equipment...chaplain-- we try to provide a variety with limitations we have.

Judge Lind

[is there a] policy to rec room>?

Col. Robert Oltman

Moved in restraints, brought back...

Judge Lind

C&A board-- how documented?

Col. Robert Oltman

Worksheet. Detainee name, classification, his status-- believe some items are tolerance [to stress]...at bottom... They sit on there and then recommend for his status.

Judge Lind

Require?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not sure of local or Department of Defense form. But, I believe my gut would tell me Department of Defense.

Judge Lind

What is CORMIS [Corrections Management Information System]?

Col. Robert Oltman

Database files kept on detainees and prisoners.

Judge Lind

Substitution for hard copy?

Col. Robert Oltman

Brig OIC-- better person to ask.

Judge Lind

When you received weekly reports, you testified you concurred? When you reviewed look through to see where CW4 Averhart or CW2 Barnes had rational basis...or did you look at the fact-- come to my decision?

Col. Robert Oltman

A little bit of both. I am aware SECNAV-- C& A board required every 30 days. We did it every week. My focus was what doctors say, what command says, and then what Gunnery Sergeant Blenis or Staff Sergeant questions. I had mentioned building repairs...the reports read the same to me. Dialogue had to be initiated-- there were some instances...any disciplinary-- all [reports] contained what I was looking for was [missed.] Interacted primarily with counselor. [If] staff was seeing anything else regularly seen...detainee Manning just him [Gunnery Sergeant Blenis] and doctor. Detainee Manning and counselor [Gunnery Sergeant Blenis] reflections [missed]... dialogue of Brig OIC plus [missed] my interactions and query with staff.

Judge Lind

Any thought with what or who were saying...what staff?

Col. Robert Oltman

Had the counselor on staff...

Judge Lind

You mean mental health professional?

Col. Robert Oltman

They had staff working with Pfc. Manning day to day...instead of one day. I never totally saw what they said...but their reports [forensic psychiatrists] were one line. What Gunnery Sergeant Blenis put was more substantial. Col. Malone was more substantial, but Captain Hocter was one line.

Judge Lind

You had a meeting where he was more vocal?

Col. Robert Oltman

He was more vocal...but never peer-to-peer discussion...never-- and in fairness to Captain Hocter I did not seek him out-- and, in fairness I did not seek him out.

Judge Lind

Did Captain Hocter meet with CW4 Averhart or CW2 Barnes?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes. Tightened procedure...know when they were generally in and out-- so we could get [missed] dialogue. There wasn't good communication before that.

Judge Lind

When did process mature?

Col. Robert Oltman

I think when CW2 Barnes came on.

Judge Lind

In email appellate exhibit 419(b), 'every change with Boss'?

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe I am-- I am trying to present picture-- adhere to chain. He went out and contacted her. [Missed.]

Judge Lind

So, Col. Choike is boss?

Col. Robert Oltman

I did. [This answer doesn't make sense as I transcribed it, but affirmative.]

Judge Lind

You testified that you visited Pfc. Manning half a dozen times?

Col. Robert Oltman

Yes.

Judge Lind

Before underwear?

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe so. Can't say for sure. [Missed.]

Judge Lind

Can you explain?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.] Walk down aisles. Tell me who he was, then we would have dialogue-- any issues or concerns.

Judge Lind

What was his response?

Col. Robert Oltman

No issue. Never brought anything to my attention...,'Yes, sir.' Long response not required.

Judge Lind

Did you notice anything odd or different about his...?

Col. Robert Oltman

[No answer.]

Judge Lind

See chaplain?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not aware of any chaplain ever coming to visit... ...don't recall seeing chaplain. He would reach out to unit chaplain...command [missed] officer... ...don't recollect command done on date.

Judge Lind

In command visit, any issues brought to your attention?

Col. Robert Oltman

Every report...command no concerns.

Judge Lind

Threatening phone calls? CW2 Barnes...any other?

Col. Robert Oltman

Not aware...as I stated calls would not only come to Brig but IG [Inspector General] office... That call and context sent out via email.

Judge Lind

During VIP tour, able to see Pfc. Manning where he was? VIP talk to Pfc. Manning?

Col. Robert Oltman

No, Ma'am.

JUDGE LIND ENDS EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

DEFENSE RE-EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

Defense (Coombs)

Aware of Brig staff informing of observation they had seen that week?

Col. Robert Oltman

I believe they stated what happened.

Defense (Coombs)

Pfc. Manning talk to Brig OIC or staff?

Col. Robert Oltman

[Missed.]

Defense (Coombs)

20 minutes of rec call 29 July to 10 December 2010?

Col. Robert Oltman

It was in reports, so I am aware.

Defense (Coombs)

So, 29 July 2010 to 10 December 2010, no rec call?

Col. Robert Oltman

That is about right.

Defense (Coombs)

No sunshine?

Col. Robert Oltman

Sunshine call tried to expand.

Defense (Coombs)

Ever aware Captain Hocter making repeated recommendations for more rec call?

Col. Robert Oltman

No. Detainee allowed to exercise by themselves-- there is a governing document that guides that.

END OF DEFENSE EXAMINATION OF COL. ROBERT OLTMAN

COL. ROBERT OLTMAN IS DISMISSED

Alexa O'Brien Alexa O'Brien researches and writes about national security and law enforcement. Her work has been published in The New York Times, VICE News, The Cairo Review of Global Affairs, Guardian (UK), The Daily Beast, NY Daily News, and featured on the BBC, PBS, NPR, Democracy Now!, and Public Radio International. She was shortlisted for the 2013 Martha Gellhorn Prize for Journalism in the United Kingdom and listed in The Verge 50. In 2016, she worked at The Constitution Project in Washington, D.C. as a staff researcher and writer on an independent commission studying Oklahoma's death penalty. She also provided research support to scholars of the first cost study conducted on that state's capital punishment system.