On May 24, 2020, the CAAF decided United States v. Bess, a case about racial discrimination in member panel selection. In light of Bess, the CAAF issued a summary disposition on June 24, 2020 remanding United States v. Jeter back to the NMCCA. Below is the summary of the United States v. Jeter opinion from 2019.
Today Prof. VanLandingham pointed out this article, indicating bipartisan support for the new Military Justice Improvement Act:
"This white paper recommends that Congress reject proposals that would remove a commander’s
prosecutorial discretion and instead place it in the hands of senior armed forces lawyers....
Here are the results of our anonymous poll. The poll asked whether or not commanders should retain prosecutorial discretion over felonies. This one was more mixed than our previous poll about factual sufficiency.
Stay tuned this week for more coverage of this prosecutorial discretion issue, including recent updates from Congress.
Below is a brief description of a recent AFCCA opinion.
We are pleased to announce that Dr. Michel Paradis is joining as the new Law of Armed Conflict Editor, with topics to include the law of war and military commissions. As the Lorance case reminds us, these issues can arise in military justice cases.
Michel is currently a senior appellate defense counsel at the Military Commissions Defense Organization (appropriate disclosures and disclaimers will be forthcoming). He is well known at the DC Circuit as the attorney who litigated most of the significant cases involving the contours of the law of war in the United States.
Thanks to a reader for tipping us off to a development in a high profile case:
Last week, the AFCCA decided United States v. O'Bryan, a case about cruel and unusual punishment.
UPDATE to the below: CAAF has granted reconsideration in this case.
"No. 19-0365/AR. U.S. v. Jason A. Scott. CCA 20170242. On further consideration of the granted issue, 79 M.J. 308 (C.A.A.F. 2019), Appellee's motion to dismiss the granted petition, and appellant [sic] defense counsel's failure on multiple occasions to file a brief on behalf of Appellant as ordered by this Court, it is ordered that the grant of review is vacated, that the petition for grant of review is denied, and the motion to dismiss is denied as moot."
Perhaps CAAF should consider whether the attorney in question should remain a member of the Court's bar.
In March 2017, Haggart had sexual intercourse with 15-year-old “AN,” after the two met on Tinder. Haggart denied knowing who AN was during an investigation conducted by the Air Force. Sometime after, Haggart began a non-physical relationship with another minor, “AW.” Haggart’s commander issued orders directing Haggart to have no contact with AW. However, Haggart disobeyed and communicated with AW through his friend via email. Haggart was confined in the Bibb County Jail for 55 days before being transferred. A Military judge found Haggart guilty of one specification of false official statement, one specification of failure to obey a lawful order, and one specification of sexual assault of a child, in violation of 10 U.S.C. §§ 892, 907, 920b.
Haggart raises three issues on appeal: (1) whether the military judge abused her discretion by refusing to admit evidence of other sexual behavior by AN; (2) whether the military judge abused her discretion when she permitted AW to testify while wearing a high school softball uniform; and (3) whether the conditions of Haggart’s post-trial confinement were cruel and unusual under the Eighth Amendment and 10 U.S.C. § 855.
-Current Term Opinions
Joint R. App. Pro.
Global MJ Reform
LOC Mil. Law