USA Marine Kymani Powell pleads guilty to assaulting woman in Landmark Hotel

Police & Courts

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An American Marine who drunkenly groped a woman in a Territory nightclub has promised to hold his mates to account and prevent future seedy assaults.

Kymani Powell appeared in Darwin Local Court on Friday to plead guilty to unlawfully assaulting a woman at the Landmark Hotel on Roystonea Ave, on April 30.

Prosecutor Marty Aust said the Connecticut man “forcefully groped” his victim, who was unable to defend herself in the popular nightclub. 

“This was an uninvited, unwanted intrusion on an intimate area of her body by a stranger,” Mr Aust said.

Defence barrister Mary Chalmers said 21-year-old  Powell had struggled with being separated from his family, and was appalled by his own actions.

“It was … an ill-advised lapse in his otherwise exemplary character.”

Chief Judge Elizabeth Morris found him guilty, but did not record a conviction. Powell was also fined $150.

US military’s footprint is expanding in northern Australia to meet a rising China

Major construction, funded by the U.S. and Australian governments, is underway in Australia’s Northern Territory for facilities that will be used by the U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.

The facilities will support U.S. and Australian forces training to defend chains of small islands that would likely be an arena for any future conflict with China, according to former Australian assistant defense secretary Ross Babbage.

The allies are learning to conduct dispersed operations and deploy anti-ship missiles to island chains in the Western Pacific “to make it extremely difficult and dangerous for Chinese operations in a crisis,” including a conflict over Taiwan, he said by phone Wednesday.

The Australian government will likely announce more initiatives in the northern Australia before the year is over, Babbage said.

Marine boasted about being ‘trained killer’ before bouncer allegedly knocked him out

A US Marine boasted about being a “trained killer” in the minutes before he was allegedly knocked unconscious by a Darwin bouncer last year, a court has heard.

On Tuesday, venue manager Matthew Hutcheon told jurors in Summers’ trial he had told police on the night that “Hayden slapped the shit out of him” following “multiple threats of physical harm”.

In an incident report annexed to Mr Hutcheon’s police statement, the court heard he also noted Thomason was “threatening his military training and ability to kill”.

“I believe he uttered that he could kill and that he was a trained killer,” he told Crown prosecutor Ian Rowbottom.

the situation went for multiple minutes, there were multiple threats of physical violence

warfighting exercise across the Top End

US Marines of the Marine Rotational Force-Darwin (MRF-D) and members of the Australian Defence Force from Australian Army’s 1st and 13th Brigade, and Royal Australian Air Force’s 36th, 37th and 75th Squadrons have commenced Exercise Koolendong this week across the Top End.

The three week warfighting exercise is being held at Defence training areas in the Northern Territory and for the first time, in Western Australia to simulate a response to a regional security crisis.

“We are deploying significant forces by land, air and sea to training areas in both WA and the NT including Mount Bundy Training Area, RAAF Base Curtin & Yampi Sound Training Area,” Colonel Steele said.

US increases Darwin drills as PM flags review into strike power

US Marines are stepping up ‘high end’ exercises in the Northern Territory as Anthony Albanese refers a Spanish proposal to build more warships for the navy to a pending review.

The commanding officer of the 2022 Marine Rotational Force in Darwin, Colonel Christopher Steele, revealed a regimental headquarters had been established to support the deployment.

Colonel Steele said the regimental headquarters brought together the Marines’ ground, logistics and aviation combat units under a single commander, offering the deployment greater agility and flexibility to carry out exercises.

“Those things become more than the sum of their parts when you have a command element that can stitch them together,” Colonel Steele told a briefing for Australian journalists.

He said a regimental headquarters expanded co-operation to “high end” exercises.

The deepening engagement of the Marines in the Top End comes as the Albanese government prepares to undertake a review of the ADF’s base locations that will probably recommend building up the military presence in the continent’s north.