|Hon. Colleen McMahon|
Santiago was convicted on a false-statements count at a June trial and was acquitted on another count. The trial occurred only after the judge criticized the government for using the civil courts to resolve an "internal military matter."
The charges stemmed from the January 2008 accidental shooting of a Navy medic serving in the same fighting unit at Camp Echo in Diwaniyah, Iraq.
Prosecutors say Santiago lied about his gun going off in the windowless room where five men lived.The New York Post reported:
[Judge Colleen] McMahon arrived at the figure, she said, by adding $1 for every minute that passed before Santiago admitted to investigators his gun had gone off, after first claiming he did not know where the gunshot had come from. She declined to impose any prison time or probation.
“Mr. Santiago, I always told my children when they were little that lying is the worst sin,” she said. “But a lie retracted within minutes, a lie that was never believed or relied upon, is not much of a crime.”