Airman 1st Class Charles Amos Wilson III – whose case we last discussed here – was found guilty on Monday of the premeditated murder of his fiancee and their unborn child in 2013. The case was referred capital.

News reports here (Air Force Times), here (AP), and here (local).

9 Responses to “Capital sentencing underway in an Air Force case”

  1. Scott says:

    Interesting that they apparently conducted three separate courts-martial:
     
    -One for an assault on a girlfriend (G)
    -One for allegedly killing a tenet when he burned down his own rental property (NG)
    -And this one for killing his wife (G)
     
    Just a guess, but perhaps the defense requested severance of the charges to avoid spillover.
     
    Also interesting that they are apparently conducting the courts-martial in the county courthouse.  Maybe there is no local military courthouse.  Or possibly that was more convenient since he was apparently held in a civilian confinement throughout this time.

  2. Scoop McGillicutty says:

    Don’t look now, but COL Nance (presiding MJ) expressed serious concern over Trump’s comments about Bergdahl.  Mr. Fidell might just secure a dismissal of charges on this one. 

  3. k fischer says:

    Scott,
     
    Hopefully, you will never have the displeasure of spending a week in sunny Warner Robins AFB.  That place is the armpit of the AF.  There is a military courtroom at Warner Robins, but in comparison to most military courtrooms I’ve practiced in, it is the size of a closet.  This case might be getting some press, so they need the extra room, or perhaps this case is going to take three weeks, and the SJA would like to have some lesser offenses tried during that period and doesn’t want to hold up the docket.
     
    The other cases seemed to be kind of weak.  He didn’t even get a kick for the assault on the girlfriend.  Perhaps, the Government didn’t want the spillover of their weak cases resulting in a panel revolt over the charge they really wanted. 
     
    But, why not try the most serious and apparently best (capital murder of wife) first?  Would have saved me a whole bunch of money.

  4. k fischer says:

     Or possibly that was more convenient since he was apparently held in a civilian confinement throughout this time.

     
    That could also be it, too.  Houston County Detention where he was being held is a pretty good click from WRAFB.

  5. Bill Cassara says:

    It was moved to accommodate the press and the large number of witnesses.  You can barely fit counsel into the Warner Robins AFB court room.

  6. Matt says:

    Is there any other system in the country that would roll straight into sentencing the day after a conviction in a capital case? I get it, courts-martial are supposed to be efficient, but you’d think they would give them a little time to regroup.

  7. Isaac Kennen says:

    The government referred all charges to one court-martial.  Then, on defense motions, the trial judge dismissed three allegations and severed the remaining three charges into separate courts-martial.  See Becky Purser, Robins airman accused of killing fiancee, unborn child could face court-martial in June, The Telegraph, December 19, 2014 (last visited Feb 16, 2017); see also Oriana Pawlyk, Airman facing possible death penalty will have three courts-martial, Air Force Times, April 21, 2016 (last visited Feb 16, 2017).

  8. Scott says:

    Isaac,
     
    Good catch.  Thanks for pointing that out.