This week at SCOTUS: The Court denied cert. in Katso (noted here). A new cert. petition was filed in Akbar v. United States (CAAFlog case page). Last year CAAF split 3-2 to affirm Sergeant Akbar’s death sentence for his attack on fellow soldiers in Kuwait in 2003 that killed two and wounded 14 others. Akbar is one of only six military death row inmates.
I’m not aware of any other military justice developments at the Supreme Court, where I’m tracking two cases:
- Sullivan v. United States, No. 15-0186 (resp. requested by Court, due Apr. 29) (CAAFlog case page)
- Akbar v. United States (pet. filed on Apr. 7; resp. due May 9) (CAAFlog case page)
This week at CAAF: The next scheduled oral argument at CAAF is on April 26, 2016.
This week at the ACCA: The Army CCA’s website is still not accessible to the public (discussed here). I’m not aware of any scheduled oral arguments at the Army CCA.
This week at the AFCCA: The Air Force CCA’s website shows no scheduled oral arguments.
This week at the CGCCA: The Coast Guard CCA’s oral argument schedule shows no scheduled oral arguments.
This week at the NMCCA: The Navy-Marine Corps CCA will hear oral argument in one case on Thursday, April 14, 2016, at 10 a.m.:
United States v. Valladares-Garcia
Case summary: A panel of members with enlisted representation sitting as a general court-martial convicted appellant, contrary to his pleas, of making a false official statement, sodomy, and adultery in violation of Articles 107, 125, and 134, UCMJ, 10 U.S.C. §§ 907, 925, and 934 (2012). The members sentenced appellant to two years’ confinement, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, reduction to pay grade E-1, and a bad-conduct discharge. The Convening Authority approved the sentence as adjudged and, except for the punitive discharge, ordered the sentence executed.
I. The Fifth and Sixth Amendments give appellant a substantial right to fair notice of the charge against him. Charge II (consensual sodomy) fails to expressly allege a Marcum factor and therefore fails to state an offense. The government failed to cure the defect by not providing notice through the presentation of evidence. Should Charge II be dismissed?
II. The Government must prove each element of an offense beyond a reasonable doubt. Here, the Government failed to introduce sufficient evidence to prove Charge III (adultery). Specifically, the Government failed to introduce sufficient evidence that sexual intercourse occurred between appellant and Ms. MM or that the appellant’s alleged adultery was prejudicial to good order and discipline or had a tendency to bring the armed services in to disrepute or lower it in the public esteem. Is the adultery conviction legally and factually sufficient?