Afghan Massacre Death Toll Now 17 No details given on why it was raised By Newser Editors and Wire Services Posted Mar 22, 2012 10:52 AM CDT 1 comment Comments An elderly Afghan man sits next to the covered body of a person who was allegedly killed by a U.S. service member. (AP Photo/Allauddin Khan) (Newser) – The death toll in the March 11 massacre of Afghan villagers is now 17, US defense officials say. They today confirmed that investigators have increased the number of dead from the widely reported 16, but they were unable to immediately explain the change. There was initial confusion about the number of dead in the immediate aftermath of the shooting, but Afghan and US officials had said 16 for the past week. Army Staff Sgt. Robert Bales is expected to be charged tomorrow in the deaths and is in custody in a US military prison.