Supporters of an investigation into the death of a 19-year-old U.S. Army Private who was found dead in 2005 is demanding justice.

LaVena Johnson’s body was discovered at Balad military base in Iraq. She was the first female soldier from Missouri to die in the country and while her death was officially declared a suicide, Johnson’s family wants an investigation conducted. 


[The Department of Defense] claimed that she died as a result of a self-inflicted gunshot to the head with an M-16 rifle. Amid confusion and the viewing of her body, her family decided to investigate and what they found was shocking. […] Two ballistics experts, Donald Marion and Cyril Wecht, told the family that LaVena’s wounds were not consistent with an M16 and the alleged exit wound from the top of her head looks more like a wound caused by a 9 mm pistol.

The US military’s autopsy of LaVena had revealed a busted lip, broken teeth, scratch marks on her neck, but no serious injuries. Yet after she was raised from the grave for a second autopsy, new X-rays would reveal a broken neck. Even stranger, the second autopsy also showed the military had removed part of LaVena’s tongue, vagina and anus, and didn’t tell the Johnsons, or document this in the first autopsy.


The petition calls for Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill to demand that the Department of Defense launch an investigation into what really happened to LaVena Johnson.

The petition, created by Mantra Lotus, is endorsed by Dr. John H., Linda, and the rest of the Johnson family; relatives and friends.

You can sign the petition here. 

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