Here is Navy Times coverage of the affidavit submitted by retired Rear Admiral  Patrick J. Lorg in the sexual assault case of Senior Chief Special Warfare Operator (SEAL) Keith Barry.  Here is Zach’s prior coverage from the Washington Times.  Here is a link to the NMCCA opinion in the case.

24 Responses to “More on Unlawful Command Influence Affidavit at CAAF from Retired Navy One-Star”

  1. Studentia says:

    So I’m sure the Navy is going to reduce the rank of the former TJAG for unlawful command influence, conduct unbecoming an officer and ethical violations….

  2. Leatherneckin' says:

    Just when I thought I could not respect the Navy any less…  Can’t robots drive boats?  Let’s get movin’ on that front!

  3. a. hernandez says:

    Around 2000 I had a convening authority disapprove the findings in a contested urinalysis court martial (panel case).  I had noticed that the panel members had shown different levels of sleepiness during the trial, but it was the testimony of the court reporter during the mistrial motion that made clear how bad it had been (motion denied, of course).  I was shocked when the convening authority granted the disapproval of the findings, and forever be thankful that he understood the seriousness of the panel’s duty.  And even though this CA had an independent streak, from time to time approving deals very much opposed by his SJA, I also thanked the SJA and the chief of crim law because, although they would not comment about it, I was pretty sure that they had not opposed the request for disapproval as strongly as they could have.

  4. AF Capt says:

  5. Cheap Seats says:

    Does anyone have access to the Motion for Reconsideration?  Seeing that CAAF already affirmed, why should they revisit the issue when the Appellant had the opportunity to bring up all of this during the appeal?  What has changed?  The reason I ask is the troubling (for the Appellant) statement in the Washington Times article that:
    “He then spoke by telephone with Vice Adm. James Crawford III, then Adm. DeRenzi’s deputy and the current judge advocate general of the Navy.
    He did not recall the specifics, but a defense attorney who was apparently present said Adm. Crawford told Mr. Lorge that overturning the conviction would end Mr. Lorge’s career. Mr. Lorge retired later that year, as scheduled.”
    If a Defense attorney was present for the conversation, then the Appellant should have had this info. before the case was even heard at NMCCA.  Why wait until May 5 to get something to put before a court?  There must be MUCH MORE to this story that we aren’t seeing in these articles.  I’d love to see the actual appellate filings.

  6. Tami a/k/a Princess Leia says:

    Perhaps it was a matter of waiting until Lorge retired.  There’s enough information in that affidavit to say there’s at least some truth to it.  Happened in the Army and the Air Force too.  And unlike Franklin, perhaps Lorge wanted to ensure he maintained sufficient time in service to retire as Rear Admiral.

  7. Cheap Seats says:

    Tami, perhaps.  However, if a Defense attorney was present for the alleged UCI from then-RADM Crawford, sitting on that info. until AFTER appellate review will doom any chance of the court allowing it to be considered.

  8. J.M. says:

    Perhaps that defense attorney was waiting until they were out of the Navy so the JAG couldn’t influence their career. Or they didnt want to raise the issue without Mr Lorges affidavit as proof. 
    On the subject of Admirals, why was the Admiral in the Fat Leonard case tried in fed court and not recalled for court martial?

  9. Studentia says:

    Nothing warms your heart more like knowing those at the highest levels of our military are terrified of Congress. God forbid they hear actual weapons. 

  10. Ed says:

    J.M. Because the lead in the case was the US Attorneys Office and it would have been a poor use  of resources in a complicated case to have JAG handle it.

  11. k fischer says:

    How does the reported fact that Lorge was planning on retiring in 2015 [the year he took action] affect whether or not he was unlawfully influenced by TJAG?  Does cure the actual UCI, or in the alternative the appearance of UCI? 
    Kind of puts President Obama’s statement in May 2013 into a new perspective:  “I expect consequences,” Obama said at a press conference in early May that came just as the Pentagon released a report detailing rising incidences of sexual assaults in 2012. “So I don’t just want more speeches or awareness programs or training, but ultimately folks look the other way. If we find out somebody’s engaging in this, they’ve got to be held accountable — prosecuted, stripped of their positions, court martialed, fired, dishonorably discharged. Period.”
    I always thought President Obama was referring to those accused of sexual assault when he said “engaging in this.”  But, after reading the statement again.  “This” could have referred to “folks [who] look the other way.”  And, if Lorge had dismissed the charge at clemency, then he could have been accused of “looking the other way” and an attempt might have been made to prosecute him, strip him of his position, court-martial him, dishonorably discharge him.  Period.  I mean, how else might his career have been over?

  12. Ed says:

    K Fisher
    As duplicitous  and  as disreputable as the Obama administration’s attitude toward alleged sexual assault in the military I do not think he would have gotten the Eric Burris treatment but rather just retired as a Captain.

  13. stewie says:

    Ok I’ll bite, how was the Obama administration’s attitude towards sexual assault in the military “duplicitous?”
    I can guess the other “d” but I’m just curious how the administration was anything other than straight-forward.
    I’m also curious how this goes to the administration when it’s really Congress that’s been driving this particular train.

  14. Ed says:

    Stewie  as a start using statistics that are patently false, Letting Susan Helms twist in the wind ,  pretending to be interested in fairness to minorities while permitting 120  prosecutions of minority academy students that never should have been brought.

  15. DCGoneGalt says:

    The administration wasn’t duplicitous.  I think they were up front and honest about what they intended to do.  Their words and actions showed they believed there was a rape culture in need of a re-education camp, that rape was everywhere, that false allegations were extremely rare, that legal changes were required to bring more cases to trial, that more convictions and harsh sentences were needed.  They weren’t duplicitous about it.  And what’s changed?  Title IX OCR Deal Colleagues Letter is still in place for colleges.  And there has been, and I doubt will be in the near future, a push to restore sanity to the debate within military justice.  And TJAGs and commanders keep using the same talking points and don’t seem to be willing to force the issue even if they agree a course correction is needed.

  16. Tami a/k/a Princess Leia says:

    I think people are overlooking an important context to this whole fiasco, found in the footnotes of NMCCA’s opinion.  The NMCCA kicked this case back for a new SJAR and CA Action mid-March 2015.  No explanation why.  Early June, Lorge approves the findings and sentence, but this court-martial order contains a lot of discussion of Lorge’s hesitation and concerns and a recommendation to NMCCA to disapprove the discharge or take other action to provide relief.  The defense raises an issue of whether Lorge abused his discretion in failing to send it back for a new trial/retrial, etc.  Which of course NMCCA says no, he knew his legal options and exercised his discretion.  Hence now an affidavit describing the pressure he got to approve the findings and sentence, such that he didn’t really have any discretion.
    What happened between the time the case got the initial green light and when NMCCA sent it back?  I can picture all the JAGs emphasizing this point, and how bad the Navy looks if a case that one day got the green light now gets a red light over concerns at trial.  What will Congress think, what will Obama think about Lorge if he previously approved, but now disapproves over “grave concerns” of what happened at trial?  TJAG showed up in his office to discuss, was this an Article 6 visit or a special trip to emphasize the importance of supporting the results of this high-profile case?

  17. Emmanuel Goldstein says:

    Look people, the only thing I find surprising about this all is that anyone is surprised.  Congress has said and demonstrated repeatedly that if military leaders exercise their independent discretion with sexual assault allegations by doing anything in reality other than prefering charges, refering cases, and approving findings and sentences as adjudged, then they will suffer consequences to their careers.  They carried out their threats against General Franklin, Helms, and probably others. No one seems to have pushed back against any of this much less the underlying narrative that the military ever had a sexual assault epidemic, to begin with.  Unethical journalists like Sabrina Rubin Erderly of the Rolling Stone hoax also wrote “The Rape of Petty Officer Blumer”, another single sourced-article that read like a 50 Shades of Grey fan fiction. It’s only one degree of separation from her to The Invisible War, which provided the Reichstag fire to gut the military justice system of its major protections of the accused. One particular senator said that the only thing she cared about with military justice reform was how it benefited victims. And of course, anyone who makes a complaint or allegation is a victim–even if they don’t know it yet. The best course of action a prudent service member can take these days is celibacy before marriage, celibacy during marriage, and celibacy after marriage.  Also, following the VP Mike Pence rules. 

  18. Eric Blair says:

    Emmanuel Goldstein
    Couldn’t have been better said.

  19. Big Brother of the POD People says:

    You are traitorous, misogynistic, perpetuators of rape culture and patriarchy.  I shall forever stomp my boot upon your face.  Right this way, Room 101 is the first on your left.

  20. k fischer says:

    Unethical journalists like Sabrina Rubin Erderly of the Rolling Stone hoax also wrote “The Rape of Petty Officer Blumer”, another single sourced-article that read like a 50 Shades of Grey fan fiction.

    That is an interesting statement.  I wonder how many innocent men are in Leavenworth because of a single sourced allegation that is full of holes prosecuted by SVP’s who lack the integrity to tell the panel that they should not convict because the Government has not provided proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the Accused is guilty.

  21. TC says:

    How exactly did the Obama administration permit 120 prosecutions of minority academy students that never should have been brought?  Should Obama have committed UCI and told the Superintendent not to refer charges?

  22. stewie says:

    Thanks Obama!

  23. Ed says:

    By creating a climate that enabled CA’s to do the easy thing but not the right thing. No he shouldn’t have called the Superintendent. Nor should it have been necessary. Making a banality of the evil taking place does not eliminate it.

  24. TC says:

    Assuming it was the easy thing to refer 120 charges, why bring up that some of the accuseds were minorities?  Are you suggesting that the president created a climate that encouraged the prosecution of minorities?