This week at SCOTUS: I’m not aware of any military justice developments at the Supreme Court, where I’m tracking one case:
- Larrabee v. United States, No. 18-306 (resp. req. Oct. 3, due Jan. 2)
This week at CAAF: The next scheduled oral arguments at CAAF are on January 22, 2019.
This week at the ACCA: The next scheduled oral argument at the Army CCA is on January 16, 2019.
This week at the AFCCA: The next scheduled oral argument at the Air Force CCA is on January 16, 2019.
This week at the CGCCA: The Coast Guard CCA’s website shows no scheduled oral arguments.
This week at the NMCCA: The Navy-Marine Corps CCA will hear oral argument in one case this week, on Thursday, December 20, 2018, at 10 a.m.:
United States v. Watkins, No. 2017002
Case summary: A general court-martial composed of members with enlisted representation convicted the appellant, contrary to his pleas, of two specifications of violating a lawful order in violation of Article 92, UCMJ one specification of committing a lewd act upon a child in violation Article 120b, UCMJ; and one specification of obstructing justice in violation of Article 134, UCMJ. The members sentenced the appellant to five years confinement, reduction to paygrade E-1, and a dishonorable discharge. The convening authority approved the sentence as adjudged, and, except for the dismissal, ordered the sentence executed.
I. Did the military judge err in denying civilian defense counsel’s motion to withdraw as appellant’s counsel?
II. The Sixth Amendment guarantees an accused the right, within limits, to retain counsel of his own choosing. Before trial, and after his civilian counsel moved to withdraw from the case citing a perceived conflict, the appellant asked to release his civilian counsel and hire a different one. Did the military judge err by denying this request?