Caldwell Case Response
Here is a brief Op-ed from National Review Online about the criminalization of a suicide attempt at issue in the Caldwell case. 

Manning Unlawful Pretrial Confinement Hearing
Here (AP via Baltimore Sun) and here (LA Times) are coverage of the hearing.  News organizations are waiting for Manning to take the stand, though that seems unlikely given the other testimony in the case.  But nice job creating a buzz defense counsel!

7 Responses to “Military Justice News for Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012”

  1. k fischer says:

    re Baltimore Sun Article Manning article: 

    Why is one of Manning’s guards carrying an automatic weapon?  Ft. Meade doesn’t seem like it is that dangerous of a place where some lunatic is going to whack him.

    Also, seems to me that pleading to 16 years worth of charges before the Article 10 motion is decided is similar to submitting a Chapter 10 after the Convening Authority has approved an offer to plead guilty.  

    Then again, if the Government doesn’t prove up the other charges, then I wonder if the MJ would think:  You guys abused Article 10 and the speedy trial clock for a case you agree is worth a little over 3 disrespect or false statement offenses?  Case dismissed. 
    Here’s an article listed on Drudge:

    http://news.sky.com/story/1018283/manning-guard-joked-about-underwear-risk

    “[T]he chief legal officer at Quantico at the time, Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Greer, made light of the underwear episode in an email, composing a rhyme in the style of the popular Dr Seuss books.
    The message said: “I can wear them in a box. I can wear them with a fox. I can wear them in the day. I can wear them so I say. But I can’t wear them at night. My comments gave the staff a fright.” 

    You have to watch what you put into an e-mail.  Reminds me of when I was a TC, I camethisclose to offering into evidence during a motion to dismiss under Article 10 a response by defense counsel to my e-mail informing him that his client who was facing distro charges at court martial got arrested in Atlanta for possession and DUI.  His response was, “Good!  Let’s leave his a$$ up there!”  The accused couldn’t make bail and as I recall, the magistrate was quite defense friendly, so I did as the accused’s counsel requested.  Apparently, the DC forgot about that communique when he accused the command of allowing the accused to languish in civilian confinement awaiting trial in his motion.  I didn’t admit the e-mail under the logic of “but for the grace go I,” plus I did not want the accused to lose confidence in his counsel.

    Obviously, the DC would have preferred to have his client back at Benning and was just blowing off steam with the e-mail..  That is probably what Greer was doing with his e-mail, but it really looks bad when the Government does it.

  2. k fischer says:

    DP, 

    Upon reading the article, note to self:  Before you argue that your client’s basis for dismissal is that he was held on suicide watch for too long, ask him before you draft the brief if he considered committing suicide while confined.  If so, then you better have a solid explanation why the guards should not have had him on suicide watch.

  3. Soonergrunt says:

    @K Fischer,
    Do you think that will hurt their claim, really?  I mean that they at essentially claiming that the Marines, in dear that he would attempt suicide basically put non into a situation where he was sat risk of becoming suicidal.  Ironic, that, but it send ratio me that the Government shouldn’t be rewarded for making this particular self-licking ice cream cone.

  4. Soonergrunt says:

    @Soonergrunt, autocorrect on the phone sucks.

  5. k fischer says:

    SG, 

    I’m no Manning fanboy, but I have more of a disdain of how this case was handled by the Government.  If he was really that much of a traitor, then the Government should have handled this case with the utmost care and not let all this time go by.   However, if he admitted that he was suicidal on the stand, then that would hurt his claim with me.  I don’t know if the self licking ice cream cone analogy (while extremely clever) gets the defense over that hurdle in my view.  After all, doesn’t suicide watch seems valid for someone who admits they are suicidal?  I’d like to hear the defense’s argument.  And, I like the self-licking ice cream cone analogy, SG, so clever I might steal it in the right case.

  6. Bill C says:

    And we wonder why cases are turned over to Federal Court for prosecution?  If he and Hasan had been tried in Federal Court, both cases would be over.