Subscribe

NAVAL AIR STATION KEFLAVIK, Iceland — It wasn’t easy for the family of Airman 1st Class Ashley Turner to watch legal proceedings against the man accused of killing her.

Turner’s parents, Lisa and Larry Turner, and her brother, Jason, heard descriptions of her body and the manner in which she had been slain.

They viewed the game room where her body was found. The room has been preserved as a crime scene since last fall and still bears a large bloodstain.

They also took the stand to describe how Ashley’s death has affected them. All three said the Air Force should seek the death penalty if the case goes to court-martial.

But at the end of the Article 32 hearing on the case against Airman Calvin E. Hill, of the 56th Rescue Squadron, the three said they felt positive about the military justice process and confident in the prosecutors.

“We feel we’ve got good people on our side,” Jason Turner said Wednesday after the two-day hearing.

The investigating officer will make a recommendation on whether a court-martial should be held for Hill, 20.

Some of the family’s views have changed since the months just after her death. Larry Turner originally said he felt the Air Force was unprepared to deal with the family, and often left them in the dark about the case.

But last week, the family members said they now better understand why the Air Force kept a lot of information close to the vest — mainly to protect its case against the suspect, they said.

Many of the details were revealed in the course of the hearing, which hinted at strategies both the prosecution and defense may attempt at a trial.

“We understand why we … weren’t being told certain things,” Lisa Turner said.

At the time of her death, Ashley Turner was waiting to testify against Hill in his court-martial on charges that he stole about $2,800 from her by using her bank card.

She was found lying facedown in a pool of blood in a room adjacent to the exercise room in a dorm she shared with Hill. She was later found to have died from head trauma and a stab wound to the neck.

Jason Turner said his outlook on his future in the military has changed since the days after his sister’s slaying, when the recent ROTC graduate was uncertain of how or whether he would continue a fledgling career in the Army.

Now, he said, he is resolved to “become the best officer that I possibly can” in the hopes of leading troops well enough to keep other parents from suffering the death of a son or daughter.

“I’m going to go Ranger and make a career that would make Ashley proud,” he said.

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign-up to receive a daily email of today’s top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign up