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Bales may not remember shooting, lawyer says

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Earlier Monday, Browne met with his client behind bars for the first time to begin building a defense and said the soldier gave a powerfully moving account of what it is like to be on the ground in Afghanistan.

Browne said he and Bales, who is being held in an isolated cell at the military prison, met for more than three hours in the morning at Fort Leavenworth. Browne, co-counsel Emma Scanlan and Bales were expected to talk again in the afternoon.

"What's going on on the ground in Afghanistan, you read about it. I read about it. But it's totally different when you hear about it from somebody who's been there," Browne told The Associated Press by telephone during a lunch break. "It's just really emotional."

Browne, a Seattle attorney who defended serial killer Ted Bundy and a thief known as the "Barefoot Bandit," has said he has handled three or four military cases. The defense team includes a military defense lawyer, Maj. Thomas Hurley.

At their meeting, Browne said Bales clarified a story, provided initially by the soldier's family, about the timing of a roadside bomb that blew off the leg of one of Bales' friends. It was two days before the shooting, not one, and Bales didn't see the explosion, just the aftermath, Browne said.

The details of the blast could not be immediately confirmed.

Military officials have said that Bales, after drinking on a southern Afghanistan base, crept away to two villages overnight, shooting his victims and setting many of them on fire. Nine of the dead were children and 11 belonged to one family.

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