According to the AP (via the Colorado Daily Sentinel, here) SGT John Russell’s attorneys argued that his mental condition at the time of the shootings in Iraq should make him ineligible for the death penalty as his Art. 32 hearing closed yesterday. According to the report, the defense claim that SGT Russell couldn’t premeditate was countered by government arguments that “whatever stress he faced, Russell remained coherent enough just before the shootings in May 2009 to reflect on his actions. ‘There’s no doubt that Sergeant Russell murdered five people,’ said one of the prosecuting attorneys, Capt. Patrick Scudieri. ‘He went down to the combat stress clinic, where he knew everyone in that clinic was unarmed.'”

NYT reports, here, that a New York state court ruled that it did not have the power to force the NY licensing body for psychologists to investigate a psychologist that allegedly assisted the USG in developing coercive interrogation tactics. The psychologist appears to have been a civilian, but one can see the potential implications for uniformed health professionals if the human rights group had been successful in forcing the board to investigate the claims.

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