This week at SCOTUS: I’m not aware of any new military justice developments at The Supreme Court. The two active petitions for certiorari in military justice cases (United States v. Ballan, No. 11-1394 and United States v. Fry, No. 11-1395) (case links in this post) haven’t yet been distributed for conference.

We continue to wait for the Court’s decision in Williams v. Illinois, No. 10-8505 (our coverage summarized here).

This week at CAAF: CAAF has completed its oral argument schedule for the term.

The court heard oral argument in 35 cases this term, and to-date issued 25 published opinions (plus one summary affirmation and one dismissal), leaving eight cases undecided.

This week at the ACCA: The Army CCA will hear oral argument in United States v. Schell, No. 20110264, on Wednesday, June 6:

Case Summary: Appellant was convicted at a general court-martial of attempted indecent language, attempted indecent acts, and attempted enticement of a minor under 18 U.S.C. § 2422(b) (2006). Appellant was sentenced to a bad-conduct discharge, confinement for eighteen months, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and reduction to the grade of E-1.

Issues:
I. Whether article 80, UCMJ, preempts prosecution of the offense alleged in this case under Article 134, and if so, whether the finding of guilty to charge II and its specification must be reversed.
II. Whether appellant’s unsworn statements that “[he] never intended to do anything with the girl” and “that [he] never intended to act on [their] discussions” set up matter inconsistent with his plea of guilty to charge II and its specification sufficient to warrant reversal of the finding of guilty to that charge and rejection of his plea.
III. Whether the military judge erred by accepting life in confinement as the correct calculation of the maximum punishment in the case, and if so, whether appellant’s plea was therefore improvident.
IV. [Whether] the military judge’s failure to discuss with appellant that the offense of attempted enticement of a minor requires a substantial step toward the commission of the underlying substantive offense provides a substantial basis in law to question appellant’s plea.

This week at the AFCCA: There are no scheduled oral arguments at the Air Force CCA.

This week at the CGCCA: The Coast Guard Trial Docket shows no pending cases at the Coast Guard CCA.

This week at the NMCCA: The Navy-Marine Corps CCA will hear oral argument in two cases this week:

June 6, 2012: United States v. Perry

Case Summary: A general court-martial composed of members with enlisted representation convicted appellant, contrary to his pleas, of one specifications of aggravated sexual assault and obstruction of justice, in violation of Articles 120 and 134, UCMJ, 10 U.S.C. §§ 920 and 934. The members sentenced the appellant to 36 months of confinement, reduction to pay grade to E-1, total forfeitures of all pay and allowances, and a dishonorable discharge. The Convening Authority approved the sentence as adjudged and, except for the punitive discharge, ordered it executed.

Issue: Whether the military judge erred when instructing the members on the elements of aggravated sexual assault by giving the Benchbook instruction for substantial incapacitation?

June 7, 2012: United States v. Hickerson

Case Summary: A panel of members with enlisted representation sitting as a general court-martial convicted the appellant, contrary to his pleas, of one specification of transferring obscene material over the internet, one specification of attempting to entice a minor to engage in sexual activity, two specifications of possessing child pornography, and one specification of receiving child pornography, all in violation of Article 134, UCMJ, 10 U.S.C. § 934. The members sentenced the appellant to twenty years of confinement, reduction to pay grade E-1, total forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and a dishonorable discharge. The Convening Authority approved the sentence as adjudged, and, except for the punitive discharge, ordered the sentence executed.

Issues:
I. Whether specification 2 of the charge states an offense under clause 3 of Article 134, UCMJ, and if the specification fails to state an offense, whether this court may affirm a finding of guilty under either clause 1 or 2 of Article 134, UCMJ?
II. Whether, in the event the court finds that the evidence was legally or factually insufficient to affirm the findings of guilty to specifications 4, 6, and 7 of the charge under clause 3 of Article 134, UCMJ, the court may affirm findings of guilty under either clause 1 or 2 of Article 134, UCMJ?

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