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YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — Police said Tuesday the U.S. sailor accused of punching two Japanese women in Yokosuka told them that he was too drunk to remember what happened.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jon Michael Cockrell remained in Kanagawa police custody Tuesday after his weekend arrest for allegedly attacking two 50-year-old women in Yokosuka’s Hinode district.

The 30-year-old USS Blue Ridge sailor told investigators he did not remember anything — including hitting the women around 12:45 Sunday morning as they walked down the street, according to a spokesman for the International Investigation Department of the Kanagawa Prefectural Police.

He confirmed that a breath-analysis test on Cockrell detected alcohol.

Police believe the sailor did not know the women and that he was alone when the alleged attack occurred.

The bruises on the women’s heads and faces will require about two weeks of medical treatment to heal, police said.

As of Tuesday afternoon, there had been no liberty policy changes for the Kitty Hawk Strike Group or 7th Fleet because of the incident, according to officials from both commands.

Sailors assigned to USS Kitty Hawk are being “spot checked” on their individual liberty plans, which detail what they do on their off hours, said the aircraft carrier’s spokesman, Lt. Bill Clinton. He added that the change was not a result of the recent incident.

Liberty policies were already in place — including the liberty plans and a requirement for sailors ranked E-4 and below to have a “liberty buddy” with them when they are drinking alcohol — but now leadership is doing more checking up, Clinton said.

“It used to be 20 percent spot check, and now we’re doing 100 percent checks,” Clinton said. “It’s just in the short term to make sure folks are where they say they are.”


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