This week at SCOTUS: Last week, a petition for a writ of certiorari was filed in the case of United States v. Miranda, No. 11-1237. Three days later the government waived its right to respond. The case history includes denial by the NMCCA of the appellant’s sole assignment of error that his pleas were improvident due to his bipolar and post-traumatic stress disorders. CAAF summarily affirmed the NMCCA on January 17, 2012, noting the “legal nullity” in the convening authority’s action.

Additionally, the Supreme Court will hear oral argument in a case of potential, albeit subtle, interest to military practitioners, Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians v. Patchak, Nos. 11-246 & 11-247, which presents a question of prudential standing under the Administrative Procedures Act to challenge federal non-compliance with the law.

Finally, we anticipate a potential landmark decision this week in the confrontation clause case of Williams v. Illinois, No. 10-8505 (see our coverage here, here, and here).

This week at CAAF: CAAF will hear oral argument in three cases this week, all on Monday, April 23:

United States v. Behenna, No. 12-0030/AR

Issues:
I. Whether the military judge’s erroneous instruction limiting the right to self-defense deprived Appellant of his constitutional right to a fair trial.
II. Whether the government’s failure to disclose favorable information to the defense deprived Appellant of his constitutional right to a fair trial.

Case Links:
Blog post: Behenna gets 25 years at GCM
Blog post: TWIMJ – 5 Dec 10 (ACCA hearing)
Blog post: ACCA argument recap
ACCA opinion (CAAFlog link)
Blog post: ACCA opinion analysis
Appellant’s brief
Appellee’s (government) brief
Appellant’s reply brief
NACDL’s amicus brief
NIMJ’s amicus brief
Blog Post: Argument preview

United States v. Ignacio, No. 12-0202/NA

Issue: In an Article 120(h), UCMJ, case, the military judge failed to instruct the members to consider all of the evidence, including the evidence of consent, when determining whether the government proved guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. In light of United States v. Prather, and United States v. Cheeseman, does the application of the affirmative defense provided by Article 120 without the aforementioned instruction violate appellant’s right to due process?

Case Links:
NMCCA opinion
Appellant’s brief
Appellee’s (government) brief
Appellant’s reply brief
Blog Post: Argument preview

United States v. Hathorne, No. 12-6002/AF

Issues:
I. Whether government counsel’s strategic withholding of the convening authority’s grant of immunity makes appellant’s statement to government counsel non-immunized.
II. Whether, in light of United States v. Lopez de Victoria, 66 M.J. 67 (CAAF, 2008), this court has jurisdiction over an Article 62, UCMJ, appeal when the court-martial has adjudged a sentence that did not include a punitive discharge or confinement for one year?

Case Links:
AFCCA’s opinion
Blog post: AFCCA grants another Article 62
Blog post: CAAF grant
Appellant’s supplement to petition for grant of review
Government’s answer
Appellant’s brief
Appellee’s (government) brief
Blog Post: Argument preview

This week at the ACCA: The Army CCA will hear oral argument in three cases this week.

Wednesday, April 25: United States v. Jasper, No. 20100112

Issue: Whether the military judge abused his discretion in denying defense’s motion to compel production of Pastor Ellyson finding the alleged victim’s communications to Pastor Ellyson were privileged under M.R.E. 503, resulting in denial of appellant’s Sixth Amendment right to cross examine witnesses and present a defense.

Thursday, April 26: United States v. Pleasant, No. 20100781

Issue: [Whether t]he evidence is legally and factually insufficient to support the appellant’s conviction for attempted larceny of military property and larceny of military property on divers occasions in Baghdad, Iraq.

Friday, April 27: United States v. Temple, No. 20090883

Issues:
I. [Whether t]he military judge committed plain error in failing to instruct the panel on consent.
II. [Whether t]he trial defense counsel provided, to the substantial prejudice of appellant, ineffective assistance of counsel to appellant during trial by waiving an instruction on consent, which was in fact the theory of defense in the case, and failing to adequately investigate the underlying Article 15 received by a defense witness.

This week at the AFCCA: The Air Force CCA will hear oral argument in two cases this week, both on Wednesday, April 25. The first is United States v. Nixon, No. 37622. The second is United States v. Dimatteo. No further information is available on the CCA’s website.

This week at the CGCCA: The next scheduled oral argument at the Coast Guard CCA is on May 7, 2012.

This week at the NMCCA: There are no scheduled oral arguments at the Navy-Marine Corps CCA.

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