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You all know that a client gets an automatic appeal to the Court of Criminal Appeals when the sentence is for more than one year and/or a punitive discharge.

You all know that a case with a subjurisdictional sentence gets a legal review and can be petitioned to TJAG under Art. 69(b). Also, you should know that a brief can be submitted for the Art. 69(a) review after a GCM (or as some of us do [because of timing] a request for reconsideration).

TJAG acts on legal error only. TJAG does not do a factual sufficiency review.

John E. Reid & Associates agree that more is needed than a simple “I did it.”

The reported interrogations of some of these suspects involved physical coercion, duress and outright torture. While the Supreme Court has consistently prohibited such interrogation practices, evidently the trial courts rejected the defendant’s claim that their confession was false. Traditionally, courts have afforded greater credibility to an investigator’s testimony than that of a defendant anxious to escape punishment. However, because future defense claims of improper interrogation practices may be given more credence, investigators and prosecutors should anticipate greater scrutiny by the courts in admitting confession evidence. The once accepted axiom that no innocent person would confess to a crime has proven to be false. Because of this, the prosecution must demonstrate that a confession is, in fact, trustworthy. The most convincing evidence to demonstrate the truthfulness of a confession is corroboration.

United States v. Martin, ACCA April 2020.

On appeal, Appellant argued that six separate convictions of Art. 107 were UMC under the circumstances, but

Appellant’s UMC claim never gets off the ground. Appellant contends that because the “criminality behind” his Article 107 convictions was not the statements themselves, but rather the fact that appellant made the statements “in order to steal money from the government,” his separate Article 107 convictions represented an unreasonable multiplication of charges.

United States v. Taylor, NMCCA 30 April 2020 is a government appeal of a judge’s ruling to suppress evidence.

[T]he military judge granted a Defense motion to suppress evidence resulting from the searches of 12 of Appellee’s electronic devices. We are asked to decide whether we have jurisdiction over this appeal and, if so, whether the military judge abused his discretion by suppressing this evidence. We conclude that we have jurisdiction and that the military judge did not abuse his discretion. We therefore deny the Government’s appeal.

. . .

GA: Arrest for sex offense wasn’t PC to believe digital storage device on person had evidence; SW suppressed

Defendant was arrested for aggravated child molestation and aggravated sodomy, and he had a digital storage device on him. Police sought a search warrant for the storage device, but the affidavit failed to show any probable cause to believe evidence would be found there. Landers v. State, 2020 Ga. App. LEXIS 254 (Apr. 29, 2020):

In United States v. Vance, ACCA 2018, the addressed RFGOS after changes to UCMJ but without any AR changes. It’s a little complicated so read the opinion.

Today we consider what happens when, in violation of Article 60, Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), the convening authority sets aside the findings and sentence in a case. Notably, because Army regulations were not updated to reflect a Congressional amendment to Article 60, UCMJ, the convening authority’s action was in compliance with Army regulations. The convening authority’s action was also specifically directed by the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Review Boards).

The relevant facts.

Stewart v. SecNav. One of perhaps many to come in which Jim McPherson is sued in his OFFICIAL capacity.

In this case, Marine Corps Officer Nicholas Stewart challenges the Navy Secretary’s refusal to grant him a waiver of statutory requirements that govern his eligibility for incentive pay as “arbitrary, capricious, . . . or otherwise not in accordance with law.” 5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(A). Aviation career incentive pay (ACIP) is a monthly cash benefit given to certain armed servicemembers who regularly fly aircraft as part of their official duties. See 37 U.S.C. § 301a. As relevant here, to be entitled to ACIP, servicemembers must be assigned flight duties for eight of the first twelve years of their careers, a requirement the parties refer to as a “flight gate.” By statute, the Secretary may waive the flight gate “[f]or the needs of the Service” “so long as the officer has performed” flight duties “for not less than 6 years.” Id. § 301a(a)(5). A Navy regulation, SECNAV Instruction 7220.87, further provides that the Secretary is “authorized . . . to waive ACIP flight gate requirements for aviators who are unable to meet their gates due to reasons beyond their control.” SECNAV Instruction 7220.87(4) (July 13, 2009), Joint Appendix (J.A.) 74. That regulation also sets forth a waiver-request process: officers “submit their requests via their chain of command,” and if the chain of command “endorse[s]” the request, it forwards the officer’s waiver “package” to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy, who in turn “review[s]” the package “for content, validity, and rationale,” and “forward[s]” it to the Secretary “with a recommendation to approve, disapprove, or . . . return[] to [the] . . . Marine Corps for further action.” Id. at 7220.87(5)(b)-(e), J.A. 75-76.

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