Nation Digest

Nation Digest: Drugs Suspected in 2nd DynCorp Death in Kabul

MICHIGAN: Mary Jo Pouillon, 26, daughter of antiabortion activist James Pouillon, 63, sings at his memorial in Owosso. He was killed Friday in a drive-by shooting.
MICHIGAN: Mary Jo Pouillon, 26, daughter of antiabortion activist James Pouillon, 63, sings at his memorial in Owosso. He was killed Friday in a drive-by shooting. (By Paul Sancya -- Associated Press)
Thursday, September 17, 2009

CONTRACTING

Drugs Suspected in 2nd DynCorp Death

A U.S. contractor helping to train Afghanistan's national police was found dead of a possible drug overdose last week in Kabul, just months after the State Department reprimanded his company for another worker's drug-related death.

The deaths have raised questions about DynCorp International's vetting and management of employees assigned to the police-training contract, a crucial component of the U.S. effort to hand over security responsibilities to the Afghans.

The leaders of an independent panel investigating wartime spending said Wednesday that they are troubled that drugs appear to be involved in the deaths of two workers hired by the State Department's largest contractor.

"This shouldn't be treated as an isolated event that [the State Department] can ignore," said Christopher Shays, co-chairman of the Commission on Wartime Contracting. "They really need to step in and say, 'Do we have a drug problem at DynCorp?' "

A State Department spokesman said an investigation is underway. A toxicology test will be conducted to determine if drugs were a factor.

A DynCorp spokesman said the company would not speculate on the cause of the death.

-- Associated Press

Official Says Yale Student Was Suffocated: A Yale graduate student found stuffed in the wall of a research center had been suffocated, the medical examiner reported Wednesday as police awaited results of DNA tests on evidence taken from a lab technician who worked in the building. Police call Raymond Clark III a "person of interest" in Annie Le's death.

Senate Confirms Army Secretary: The Senate confirmed Rep. John McHugh (R-N.Y.) as Army secretary. The confirmation had been held up by objections from two Kansas Republicans, Sam Brownback and Pat Roberts.

-- From News Services


© 2009 The Washington Post Company