Bales’s attorney, John Henry Browne, has said publicly that his client does not remember anything from the morning of the shootings.
Last Friday, he told NBC news that he planned to argue that Bales suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
That affliction, including claims that Bales also suffered traumatic brain injury during his multiple tours in Iraq, might have contributed to the shootings, Browne said.
Army Secretary John McHugh told members of the Senate Armed Services Committee on Tuesday that the service is planning a comprehensive review of its mental health services, specifically focusing on PTSD.
The Army has already started deploying mental health officials to the frontlines with brigade combat teams, to allow quicker access to care for soldiers in combat, an Army behavioral health specialist told reporters Thursday.
Soliders are screened for possible cases of PTSD five times during any given combat rotation, the specialist said.
Soldiers get three screenings before, during and after a deployment. They are screened again between 90 to 100 days after they return home. A final screening is conducted a year after a soldier’s combat rotation.
The specialist refused to comment on whether Bales had undergone that series of mental health reviews or if Army health professionals picked up any sign of trouble.