PORT ROYAL

Alleged Port Royal firetruck thief booted from Corps

pdonohue@beaufortgazette.comSeptember 14, 2012 

Kalvin Hunt

FILE PHOTO

A Marine who escaped from Naval Hospital Beaufort earlier this year and then allegedly stole a Port Royal fire truck that struck and killed a pedestrian was kicked out of the Corps last week for unrelated charges, according to military officials.

A Navy and Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals ruling Sept. 6 upheld the bad-conduct discharge of former Pvt. Kalvin Hunt, 26, of Sumter who was found guilty of assault and other charges during an April 2011 court-martial, said Capt. Jordan Cochran, spokesman for Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort.

Hunt has since been discharged, Cochran said.

Hunt was found guilty of assaulting or disobeying a superior noncommissioned officer, failure to obey an order or regulation, communicating a threat, resisting arrest, and assault, according to a spokesman for Navy Personnel Command in Millington, Tenn.

Hunt's sentence included a bad-conduct discharge, a reduction of rank and pay grade from corporal to private, and 175 days of confinement, according to Navy records.

Cochran said Hunt's sentence triggered an automatic review by the Navy and Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals, which examines all Navy and Marine Corps court-martials that result in either a bad-conduct or dishonorable discharge.

While the panel of military judges reviewed the case, Hunt was placed on appellate leave in August 2011, which is the authorized absence of a Marine or sailor pending the appeal of a court-martial conviction, Navy officials said.

Hunt still had that status in February when he allegedly escaped from Naval Hospital Beaufort, stripped off his clothing and stole a Port Royal fire truck that was idling at a nearby apartment complex.

According to a lawsuit filed this year, Hunt was taken to the naval hospital after telling a counselor he wanted to hurt himself and others earlier that day.

Hunt is accused of striking six vehicles and killing a pedestrian before crashing the fire truck into a wooded area off Ribaut Road.

Hunt was charged with murder in connection with the death of Justin Nicholas Miller, 28, of Port Royal and with 10 other offenses related to the crashes and the theft of the truck.

A Beaufort County grand jury indicted Hunt on those charges in April, said 14th Circuit Solicitor Duffie Stone.

Stone said no trial date has been set but added that he hopes to bring Hunt to trial "within the next several months."

Hunt was transferred last month from the Beaufort County Detention Center to a psychiatric hospital in Columbia, his attorney, Corey Fleming, has said.

Related content

  1. Decision could come soon on military status of alleged firetruck thief, Aug. 1
  2. Motorist struck by stolen firetruck sues Beaufort, Port Royal, May 26, 2012

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