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Drill instructor charged in death of a Marine recruit appears in military court

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Dalton Beals, 18, of Pennsville, New Jersey died during the final phase of US Marine Corps boot camp. (GoFundME)

The Marine Corps drill instructor charged in connection with the death of a recruit appeared in a military courtroom Wednesday morning.

The Marine corps believes Staff Sgt. Stephen Smiley was partly responsible for the death of Pfc. Dalton Beals, who died from hyperthermia while under his supervision.

Beals’ died in June 2021 during the 54-hour endurance program referred to as “The Crucible.”

Staff Sgt. Stephen Smiley was charged with negligent homicide, cruelty to subordinates, and obstruction of justice in connection with Beals’ death.

Smiley made his initial appearance in a military courtroom at Parris Island on Wednesday morning.

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