CAAF today issued a 3-2 decision in LRM v. Kastenberg concluding that the trial judge erred by denying A1C LRM, the alleged victim of a sexual assault, the right to be heard through counsel at the accused’s court-martial, and that the Air Force CCA erred in concluding it lacked jurisdiction to hear A1C LRM’s appeal.  Chief Judge Baker delivered the decision of the court, with Judge Ryan dissenting and Judge Stucky concurring in part and dissenting in part and in the result.

CAAF did not issue the requested mandamus, but instead “returned [the record] to the Judge Advocate General of the Air Force for remand to the military judge for action not inconsistent” with CAAF’s opinion.

Lots of analysis to follow.

CAAF now has only one case left from this term:  United States v. Salyer. 

9 Responses to “And then there was one: CAAF decides LRM v. Kastenberg”

  1. Zachary D Spilman says:

    Dare we say that the court is saving the best for last?

  2. Christopher Mathews says:

    I think we can say that no matter how the court decides Salyer, it will set boundaries.

  3. Tony Kurlander says:

    Great dissent by Judge Ryan! 

  4. Bill Cassara says:

    What an absolutely awful decision.  

  5. stewie says:

    One wonders if a certain subset of folks are going to take advantage of this ruling and have attorneys showing up at every single 412 hearing for the victim because they don’t believe the military counsel can adequately do the job?

  6. Wilford says:

    I wonder how this will play out in the discovery context?  Can an SVC now argue that a client’s right to be heard is not meaningful absent full access to the information trial and defense counsel receive? 

  7. stewie says:

    In the context of privileges, one would argue yes.  Although the MJ could still be the gatekeeper.

  8. rob klant says:

    If I were defense counsel I know I would surely take advantage of this ruling to hear on the record any and all “divergence” which might exist between the prosecution and the putative victim. 
    Who knows, maybe I could even get something from the victim’s counsel that I could introduce against as an admission by a “party” opponent or which consistute a waiver of the attorney-client privilege?

  9. Bridget Wilson says:

    Heck, I can see this as a new marketing opportunity.