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Today we take up the defense’s assignment of error and address the application of Mil. R. Evid. 412 to the government. Does Mil. R. Evid. 412 apply to the government? Yes. Must the government follow the procedural requirements before introducing evidence that falls under Mil. R. Evid. 412? Again, yes. And, finally, what happens when the military judge admits government Mil. R. Evid. 412 evidence without first requiring the government to follow the rule’s procedural requirements? We test for prejudice.

United States v. Carista, No. 20150243 (A. Ct. Crim. App. Jan. 18, 2017).

AF Reporter.

THE FIFTH AMENDMENT IN THE DIGITAL WORLD 2 Technology has breathed new life into the interpretation of constitutional provisions.

EXCEPTIONAL TRANSITIONAL COMPENSATION 34 Help for Family Member Victims When Discharge Happens Before the Offense is Adjudicated [; increasing the secondary gain incentive].

The most potentially relevant is McWilliams v. Dunn, No. 16-5294, involves a question regarding the degree of independence needed for appointed mental health experts under Ake v. Oklahoma.

Then there are:

Weaver v. Massachusetts, No. 16-240:  The defendant claims his lawyer was ineffective for failing to object to a closure of the courtroom during empanelment of the jury.  Violation of the right to a public trial, when considered directly, is a “structural” error that is reversible without a showing that it actually prejudiced the defendant, but an ineffective assistance of counsel (IAC) claim requires a showing of prejudice under Strickland v. Washington.  Does IAC require a showing of prejudice when the underlying error is “structural”?  I believe Strickland is clear enough that the answer is “yes,” but there is enough of a circuit split for the high court to take it up.

The SVC also testified at the post-trial Article 39(a), UCMJ, session. When asked by the trial defense counsel if it was the “standard in practice as an SVC to meet with the military judge ex parte,” the SVC stated, “Generally, yes. We’re usually not included in [R.C.M.] 802 conferences, so generally the judge will speak with us, kind of one-on-one, sometimes before the trial begins and discuss just kind of administrative matters.” The SVC did not recall having a post-trial feedback session with the military judge.

Slip op. at 2.

In United States v. Turner, the AFCCA had several issues before it, two being:

When I read that, I thought of “The Invisible War.”

Friend and forensic psychologist Reneau Kennedy sent an interesting piece across the transom today.  She forwarded a piece by Karen Franklin:

In the Dark” shines brilliant light on bungled Jacob Wetterling case

Good friend Gene Fidell has drawn attention to a news release about the new report.  In particular he notes that 23% of those surveyed last year would not recommend making a report.  The 2015 survey report is Enclosure 3.

Interestingly, last year nearly a number of respondents were dissatisfied with the various services available to a complaining witness.

Specifically, 80% of respondents were satisfied with overall services provided by the SVC/VLC during the military justice process, 74% of respondents were satisfied with the services provided by the UVA/VA, and 68% of respondents were satisfied with the services provided by the SARC. Across these individuals, less than 20% were actively dissatisfied with the services provided by the UVA/VA (19% dissatisfied) or SARC (17% dissatisfied). Few respondents were dissatisfied with the SVC/VLC program, which was the highest rated resource across all respondents (only 7% actively dissatisfied).