Although details released by military officials remain scarce, the NY Times notes that the "uncertainty" surrounding the homicide has led to much speculation among fellow Green Berets and their surrounding community.
There are no charges in Melgar's death, but his superiors suspected foul play immediately and sent an investigator to Mali.
The circumstances of Staff Sgt. Logan J. Melga'rs death has been under wraps for several months due to an investigation by the NCIS, but two Seals in question were quickly placed on leave after the military officials concluded Melgar died by strangulation. After working the case for months, the Army handed the case off to the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Times said. He said his case was transferred from the Army Criminal Investigation Command to the Navy on September 25.
NCIS did not divulge details of the investigation or provide theories on why Melgar was killed.
Neither the Army nor Africa Command issued a statement after Melgar's death, and they remained silent even after the two SEALs were classified as "persons of interest". The four American soldiers killed in Niger earlier this month were part of the same group.