, President of the National Institute of Military Justice
, has submitted the following comment to the Defense Department's Military Justice Review Group
The following issue has come to our attention. Although it may be resolved through the
normal appellate processes, statutory clarification of the military Courts of
Criminal Appeals’ authority to order sentence-only rehearings in appropriate
cases, in accordance with long-standing C.A.A.F. precedent and C.C.A. practice,
may be an issue that the Military Justice Review Group would like to explore,
and possibly include in its March 2015 submission to the Department of Defense
Although dicta in Jackson v. Taylor, 353 U.S. 569 (1957),
states that “no authority exists” for the Courts of Criminal Appeals to order
sentence-only rehearings, military Courts of Criminal Appeals have ordered such
rehearings, rather than conduct sentence reassessments, in appropriate cases
when there is a “dramatic change in the sentencing landscape” in accordance
with United States v. Moffeit, 63 M.J. 40 (C.A.A.F. 2006); United States v.
Cook, 48 M.J. 434, 438 (C.A.A.F. 1998); and United States v. Sales, 22 M.J.
305, 307-309 (C.M.A. 1986).
30, 2015, a Certificate for Review was filed seeking review of the following
issue in No. 15-0347/MC. U.S., Appellant v. Christopher A. Quick, Appellee. CCA
“WHETHER PRECEDENT AUTHORIZING COURTS OF CRIMINAL APPEALS
TO ORDER SENTENCE-ONLY REHEARINGS SHOULD BE OVERRULED BASED ON (A) JACKSON v.
TAYLOR, 353 U.S. 569 (1957), WHICH STATED "NO [SUCH] AUTHORITY"
EXISTS; (B) THE PLAIN LANGUAGE OF THE STATUTE INCLUDING THE CONJUNCTIVE
"FINDINGS AND SENTENCE" IN ARTICLE 66(d) IN CONTRAST TO AUTHORITY
GRANTED THE JUDGE ADVOCATES GENERAL IN ARTICLE 69(a) TO ACT WITH RESPECT TO
"FINDINGS AND SENTENCE OR BOTH" AND THE CONVENING AUTHORITY IN
ARTICLE 60(f)(3) TO ORDER SENTENCE REHEARINGS; AND (C) JUDICIAL ECONOMY.”
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