The officer in charge of the U.S. Naval base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, has been fired for a “loss of confidence” after he allegedly had an affair with a woman whose husband was recently found dead in the waters off the base.
Captain John Nettleton was relieved of command on Wednesday by Rear Adm. Mary M. Jackson, commander of Navy Region Southeast, “due to loss of confidence in Nettleton's ability to command,” according to a statement from the Navy.
The statement declined to give additional details because of an ongoing investigation by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS), which is focused on the death of Christopher Tur, a civilian employee at the Navy Exchange on the base who had moved to Guantanamo with his family in June 2011.
Tur, 42, was found dead in the waters off the base on the morning of January 10, a day after he had been reported missing, said Navy Region Southeast spokesman Mike Andrews. A U.S. official said there was no obvious cause of death.
The official said that information came to light during the investigation into Tur’s death that led the Navy to relieve Nettleton of command. Officials said the investigation found that Nettleton had allegedly been having an affair with Tur’s wife Lara, the director of the Fleet and Family Services Center at the base.
Adultery is a crime under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.
Nettleton has been temporarily reassigned to Jackson’s staff at Navy Region Southeast in Jacksonville, Florida. He had assumed duties as commanding officer at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay on Jun. 29, 2012.
Nettleton’s command did not include the detention facility at Guantanamo, which is headed by a one-star Navy admiral. The detention camp is a tenant facility at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay.
Capt. Scott Gray, Jackson’s chief of staff, has been assigned as acting commanding officer at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay.