Navy upholds firing of carrier captain who warned of coronavirus

Source: Politico | June 19, 2020 | Lara Seligman and Connor O’Brien

The decision to make Crozier’s firing permanent is a reversal from an initial inquiry completed in April, when the leaders recommended reinstating the captain.

The Navy has decided to uphold the firing of Capt. Brett Crozier, the former commanding officer of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt who was relieved of duty after raising the alarm about a Covid-19 outbreak on his ship in March, according to two people familiar with the investigation.

“The results of the investigation justified the relief,” said one person who has seen the investigation. “He failed to take appropriate action, to do the things that the commanding officer of a ship is supposed to do, so he stays relieved.”

No other punitive action will be taken against the captain, said a congressional aide.

In a new twist, the Navy is also expected to hold up the promotion of the senior officer onboard the Roosevelt, Rear Adm. Stuart Baker, the commander of Carrier Strike Group 9, said the two people.

“Strike Group Command will also be held accountable for poor decision-making and his second star is being put on hold,” said the aide.

After learning of the outbreak on the ship, Crozier argued for evacuating the entire crew as soon as possible. But Baker, Crozier’s superior on the ship, reportedly countered that less drastic measures should be taken.

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