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MISAWA AIR BASE, Japan — Two airmen from Misawa Air Base remain in police custody in Morioka city Monday on suspicion of attempted murder while their case is referred to the Morioka District Public Prosecutor’s Office, said a spokesman for the Morioka East Police Station.

Darius Antione Carlton and Michael Alan Maldonado — both 20 and airmen first class — were arrested at 4:23 a.m. Saturday. They are accused of beating two Japanese men on their faces and heads after the men intervened in a fight between the servicemembers and other Japanese in a Morioka city parking lot. Morioka is about 70 miles south of the base.

The prosecutor’s office will determine whether to press charges. Police, meanwhile, are recommending a charge of attempted murder because the two suspects used brass knuckles to attack the Japanese men, the police spokesman said.

Both suspects were intoxicated at the time of the arrest, the spokesman said.

Carlton is assigned to the 301st Intelligence Squadron at Misawa, and Maldonado is with the 373rd Support Squadron.

The two Japanese men — a 42-year-old businessman and a 31-year-old driver — refused to be hospitalized and were released after receiving medical treatment, the police spokesman said. Their conditions were not immediately available but the spokesman said their injuries were not life-threatening.

In an e-mail statement Monday, base spokesman Capt. John Haynes said base officials intend to cooperate fully with Japanese authorities “in resolving this issue.”

“We feel that nothing is more critical to our continued success at Misawa than our great relationship with the local community,” he said. “In no way does Misawa Air Base leadership condone inappropriate behavior by U.S. servicemembers.”

Haynes said Misawa Air Base community members are taught that possessing any form of lethal weapon is against community standards.

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Jennifer reports on the U.S. military from Kaiserslautern, Germany, where she writes about the Air Force, Army and DODEA schools. She’s had previous assignments for Stars and Stripes in Japan, reporting from Yokota and Misawa air bases. Before Stripes, she worked for daily newspapers in Wyoming and Colorado. She’s a graduate of the College of William and Mary in Virginia.
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