Navy officials reportedly recommend Capt. Brett Crozier to be reinstated following investigation


WASHINGTON, D.C. (NEXSTAR) – After an outbreak of coronavirus onboard the USS Theodore Roosevelt, Navy Captain Brett Crozier was relieved of his duty as the ship’s commander. 

Now, after an investigation, the Navy may be reversing its course on that decision. 

U.S. Navy officials are preparing to say their leadership was wrong to relieve a popular captain of his duty. 

“The US Navy is recommending Captain Crozier be reinstated,” Representative John Garamendi, D-California, said. 

John Garamendi sits on the Armed Services Committee. 

He says navy officials finished their investigation into the coronavirus outbreak on board the USS Theodore Roosevelt and will ask Defense Secretary Mark Esper to reinstate Captain Brett Crozier as the ship’s commander. 

“This is really good news as I can see it. The captain was well, well regarded by his crew. That crew needs real strong, positive leadership,” Garamendi said. 

Acting Navy Secretary Thomas Modly said he relieved Crozier of duty because the Captain did not use the proper chain of command when he asked for help fighting the coronavirus on board the aircraft carrier.

Acting Secretary Modly has since resigned after a profanity laced speech criticizing Crozier.

“He did precisely what he should do, which was protect his sailors,” Representative Jackie Speier, D-California, said. 

Jackie Speier says Crozier’s scathing letter and emails to Navy officials about their inept response to the outbreak may have saved lives. 

“What he was recommending is what, in the end, the Navy was forced to do. Four thousand sailors were taken off that ship,” Speier said. 

Defense Secretary Mark Esper will ultimately decide Crozier’s fate. 

The Department of Defense sent us this statement that reads in part:

“{Secretary Esper} intends to thoroughly review the report and will meet again with Navy leadership to discuss next steps. He remains focused on and committed to restoring the full health of the crew and getting the ship at sea again soon.” 

Congresswoman Jackie Speier has called for a further independent investigation into Crozier’s firing. 

She believes the motivation behind it was political.

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