UCI during the “investigative stage.”

NMCCA has issued an opinion in United States v. Glass.  This reads like another of the “can they do that,” cases I come across often.  During the investigative stages clients constantly want to know “can they do that.”  NMCCA’s answer is – well, yes they can – there is nothing illegal going on here.

Here appellant raised the issue of implied UCI during the investigative stages of his case for the first time on appeal.  My sense is they were trying to channel Chessani for a win.

Bottom line:

The court reaffirms the concept that the SJA acts for or in the name of the commander, and so acts with the “mantle of command authority,” citing to, United States v. Kitts, 23 M.J. 105, 108 (C.M.A. 1986).  The point being that there could be circumstances where actions of the SJA are UCI.

There is nothing that extends “Article 37, UCMJ, to the investigative stage of a criminal proceeding.”

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