Here is a link to the regulations.gov notice soliciting suggestions for the next set of changes to the Manual for Courts-Martial. Public comments are due no later than April 11, 2014.

I intent to submit a comment in April that will include both some new ideas and my suggestions from 2012 (as the 2013 changes were limited to just the rules of evidence and the maximum punishments for Article 120 (2012)).

4 Responses to “JSC solicits public suggestions for changes to the MCM”

  1. Anonymous Air Force Senior Defense Counsel with initials NM says:

    Does anyone ever suggest amending the rules to expressly authorize a bifurcated forum?  i.e. allowing the accused to have members for findings and a MJ for sentencing.

  2. phil cave says:

    Yes, bifurcation has been raised in the past.  It’s one of those items that frequently pops up.

  3. Anonymous Air Force Senior Defense Counsel with initials NM says:

    Thanks Phil.  I see all the attention going to sexual assault and I hope good ideas like the ones posted here get attention too.  I know the Cox commission recommended bifurcated forum selections, but I haven’t seen anything recently.

  4. phil cave says:

    Bifurcation (as an option for the accused) is usually wrapped into broader recommendations of reforming the whole process.  For example, when discussing issues to do with the appellate process (for which there are a number of decent significant recommendations), bifurcation will sometimes be slipped in there as a process reform.
    I certainly remember it from my time at NAD, and later at Code 20 (“JAM”).