Navy removes ship's command after boozy port visit

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SAN DIEGO (AP) — The commander and top officers of a San Diego-based Navy frigate have been relieved of duty after a booze-fueled port visit to Vladivostok, Russia.

The Navy said in a statement that Cmdr. Joseph E. Darlak, skipper of the USS Vandegrift, was removed Friday after an investigation for demonstrating poor leadership and failing to ensure proper officer conduct during the three-day September stop.

Executive officer Lt. Cmdr. Ivan A. Jimenez and the ship’s chief engineer and operations officer were also relieved. The Navy cited use of alcohol and not adhering to behavior policies.

The names of the two lower-ranked officers were not released, and the Navy did not give specifics on the misbehavior.

Capt. H. Thomas Workman has taken over the Vandegrift until it returns to San Diego later this month.

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