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Commanding officer of cruiser Cowpens fired

Feb. 10, 2012 - 01:58PM   |   Last Updated: Feb. 10, 2012 - 01:58PM  |  
The Navy has fired Capt. Robert Marin, who was commanding officer of the cruiser Cowpens.
The Navy has fired Capt. Robert Marin, who was commanding officer of the cruiser Cowpens. (Navy)
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The commanding officer of the Yokosuka, Japan-based cruiser Cowpens was fired Friday "while an investigation into inappropriate personal behavior is conducted," a George Washington Carrier Strike Group spokesman said the cruiser's second CO fired in two years.

Capt. Robert Marin took over Cowpens in early 2010 after then-CO Capt. Holly Graf was relieved for cruelty to her crew. Marin was removed by Rear Adm. John Haley, commander of the strike group, said Lt. Cmdr. Denver Applehans, a strike group spokesman.

Marin's relief is the second CO firing this year. Both of this year's reliefs were for alleged inappropriate behavior. The first was Capt. Jeffrey Riedel, the program manager for littoral combat ships at Naval Sea Systems Command, who was relieved Jan. 26. In that position, Riedel had worn a command ashore pin, a NAVSEA spokesman said.

The carrier strike group-led investigation is ongoing, Applehans said Friday.

Marin had already been onboard Cowpens in January 2010 to relieve Graf when she was fired in the wake of an inspector general report that found she had verbally and physically abused crew members. Marin immediately took command.

Marin, 47, is from Rosemead, Calif. and was commissioned in December 1986, according to Navy Personnel Command records. He graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles, with a bachelor's degree in economics, according to his official bio.

He has served aboard six ships over his career and commanded frigate Gary prior to reporting to Cowpens in late December 2009. Marin has been awarded the Legion of Merit, two Meritorious Service Medals, a Combat Action Ribbon and various other achievement and campaign decorations.

Marin has been temporarily reassigned to Naval Forces Japan pending the results of the investigation, Applehans said. He could not be immediately reached for comment.

Capt. Paul Lyons, the deputy commander of Destroyer Squadron 15, has assumed command "pending completion of the investigation," Applehans said.

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