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NAVAL STATION ROTA, Spain — The Navy has reassigned an F-14 Tomcat fighter squadron commander deployed aboard the aircraft carrier USS John F. Kennedy for a “liberty incident” that occurred on a port visit.

Rear Adm. Barry McCullough, commander of the Kennedy Strike Group, replaced Cmdr. Guy Maiden with Capt. W.R. Massey on Sunday, said Mike Maus, a U.S. Atlantic Fleet spokesman in Norfolk, Va. Maus said he could not give any details of the off-duty incident because of privacy concerns.

Maiden was the top officer in charge of Fighter Squadron 103 nicknamed the “Jolly Rogers.”

The Navy announced Tuesday that McCullough took “administrative action” against Maiden after a review of the investigation into the Oct. 11 incident.

The ship was making a port visit in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, when the incident happened, Maus said.

“The U.S. Navy takes these incidents very seriously and holds servicemembers accountable,” the Navy said in a statement. “The JFK Strike Group leadership took immediate action to ensure and reinforce accountability for individual actions.”

Cmdr. David Landess is en route to the carrier to take command of the squadron. He will serve as the interim commander until the Navy selects a replacement, Maus said. Massey, who is deputy commander of Carrier Air Wing 17, will be in command until Landess arrives aboard ship.

Maiden will be temporarily assigned to a command in the United States.

The Kennedy, which is deployed to the Middle East, has had a tumultuous year.

On Oct. 8, the Navy replaced Rear Adm. John Godlweski as commander of the Kennedy carrier group because of unforeseen complications with a pre-existing medical condition.

On Aug. 27, the Navy fired the commander of the Kennedy because of a collision between the carrier and a small wooden boat in the Persian Gulf.

Earlier this month, a report released by the Navy said faulty equipment aboard the Kennedy and the failure of department heads contributed to the death of a sailor who died in April of toxic fumes while working in the sewage pump room.


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