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Navy reprimands former Porter CO for crash

Jan. 24, 2013 - 06:59PM   |   Last Updated: Jan. 24, 2013 - 06:59PM  |  
Cmdr. Martin Arriola took command of Porter in Sept. 2011. Arriola was reprimanded for dereliction of duty and hazarding his vessel after a thorough review of the ship's Aug. 12 collision with an oil tanker in the Persian Gulf.
Cmdr. Martin Arriola took command of Porter in Sept. 2011. Arriola was reprimanded for dereliction of duty and hazarding his vessel after a thorough review of the ship's Aug. 12 collision with an oil tanker in the Persian Gulf. (Navy)
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The Navy has reprimanded the former commanding officer of the destroyer Porter for dereliction of duty and hazarding his vessel after a thorough review of the ship's Aug. 12 collision with an oil tanker in the Persian Gulf.

Rear Adm. David Thomas, the head Naval Surface Forces Atlantic, issued Cmdr. Martin Arriola, 42, a punitive letter of reprimand after determining he had been responsible for both the violations of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, SURFLANT said in a statement issued Thursday.

The severe move suggests that fleet leaders found Arriola's conduct was, at least in part, responsible for the collision, which left a gaping hole in the deployed destroyer's side that required a month and millions of dollars to fix.

After some collisions, fleet bosses have decided that relieving a skipper is punishment enough, as it was with Capt. Chuck Litchfield, who was fired after his amphibious assault ship Essex collided with a Navy oiler last May.

Arriola, a graduate of the Merchant Marine Academy, was fired on Aug. 30, 2012. The repaired ship returned from deployment Nov. 4 to Norfolk, Va., under a new CO.

Arriola did not immediately respond to a phone call seeking comment

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