Tuesday, February 10, 2015

The "good soldier defense" -- R.I.P., but not quite . . .

Stars and Stripes' Nancy Montgomery has this excellent article on the so-called "good soldier defense" -- which was mostly killed off by recent legislation. But:
Character evidence may still be introduced before sentencing at courts-martial, just as in the civilian system. And it is still allowed during the fact-finding portion of courts-martial for specifically military offenses such as desertion or disobeying orders.
That’s where its use began, [law professor and former Air Force officer Elizabeth L.] Hillman said, before the military courts gained jurisdiction of non-military crimes such as rape and murder.

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