The Michigan family of a Marine recruit who died in a fall at boot camp has filed a $100 million lawsuit against the federal government alleging his fatal plunge in a stairwell was the result of negligence by officers and others.
Raheel Siddiqui died in 2016 at a training base in Parris Island, South Carolina. The Marines declared his death a suicide, a conclusion Siddiqui's family has rejected.
According to the lawsuit filed Friday in U.S. District Court in Detroit, the Siddiqui family's lawyer, Shiraz Khan of Southfield, wrote that "recurrent physical and verbal abuse of recruits by drill instructors, with a noted insufficiency of oversight and supervision" ultimately caused Siddiqui's death, the Detroit Fress press reports.
The U.S. Marine Corps also said it had uncovered widespread hazing of recruits and young drill instructors dating back to 2015.
The 20-year-old Siddiqui was from Taylor, Michigan. He died less than two weeks after he began boot camp. His family's lawsuit alleges "negligence on multiple levels of command."
The Associated Press sent an email seeking comment from the Marines Corps on Monday.
The Marine Corps has said it identified up to 20 people possibly tied to misconduct in the 3rd Recruit Training Battalion.
A report from a preliminary investigation released a year ago said that Siddiqui had been abused physically and called "a terrorist" by his drill instructor.
The morning Siddiqui died he had complained of bleeding in his throat but was refused medical attention and forced to run laps in his barracks, according to the report. When he collapsed on the floor his drill instructor allegedly slapped him, prompting Siddiqui to run through a door in the barracks and leap over a stairwell where fell three stories to his death, the report said.