An infantry battalion commander sacked in the middle of a deployment with the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, or MEU, was at least partially fired for allegedly using a term that could be disparaging to members of the LGBTQ community, Marine Corps Times has learned.

Following a vandalism incident during a port call visit by the San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock New York in Gaeta, Italy, Lt. Col. Marcus J. Mainz, the commander of 2nd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, allegedly used the term “faggot" or “faggoty” during a meeting with the 2/6 Battalion Landing Team leaders, multiple sources have told Marine Corps Times.

Corps officials have said Lt. Col. Marcus J. Mainz was fired May 19 over a loss of trust and confidence in his ability to lead.

Several Marines were charged with and punished for underage drinking while on liberty during a port visit in Italy. One of those Marines was also charged with vandalizing a construction site.