Army Shaves Fort Hood Killer, Faces Lawsuit

Hasan's lawyer plans to sue, calls it a 'vindictive act'

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 4, 2013 2:42 AM CDT | Updated Sep 4, 2013 1:07 PM CDT

(Newser) – The beard that delayed Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hasan's trial for months has been forcibly removed at Fort Leavenworth, where he is one of six prisoners on military death row. The Army psychiatrist, who called the beard a "deeply sincere" symbol of his Islamic faith, began growing it after killing 13 people in the November 2009 shooting. An Army spokesman says Hasan was shaved at the prison, where officials had previously said he would be subject to military grooming regulations, the AP reports.

But that doesn't seem obvious to Hasan's former civilian lawyer, who tells ABC News that he plans to sue over the shaving. "Forcibly shaving him after a military council approved the beard for the duration of the trial smacks of retaliation by Army officials," John Galligan said. "This was a vindictive act." Galligan says he'll consult with other lawyers, and then probably file a federal suit. Authorities also tell ABC that, given military regulations, a video of the shave must exist.

This August 23 courtroom sketch shows Hasan as the guilty verdict is read at his court martial in Fort Hood, Texas.
This August 23 courtroom sketch shows Hasan as the guilty verdict is read at his court martial in Fort Hood, Texas.   (AP Photo/Brigitte Woosley, File)
This  photo provided by the Bell County Sheriff's Department shows Maj. Nidal Hasan.
This photo provided by the Bell County Sheriff's Department shows Maj. Nidal Hasan.   (AP Photo/Bell County Sheriff's Department, File)
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