Military Justice for All (@Military_Crime) Links on Instagram

Army Pfc. LaVena Johnson Died of Non Combat Related Injuries in Iraq; Death Ruled Suicide But Independent Autopsy Revealed Rape & Murder (July 19, 2005)

Army SSG Devin Schuette Found Dead in Vehicle at Recreation Area Near Fort Hood; CID Ruled Suicide, Spouse Requests Independent Investigation (January 3, 2016)

The war in Congress over rape in the military, explained (Vox, June 8, 2016)

The Pentagon hasn’t delivered on its promises to combat sexual harassment and assault in the ranks, GAO says (Task and Purpose, May 14, 2020)

California should take the lead in tackling the military’s sexual assault epidemic (Opinion, Orange County Register, May 8, 2020)

20-Year-Old Soldier [Pfc. Vanessa Guillen] Mysteriously Vanishes In Texas, Leaving Wallet And Keys Behind (Oxygen, April 27, 2020)

Supreme Court decision on unanimous jury verdicts leaves military out (Stars and Stripes, April 23, 2020)

Navy PO1 Cherie Morton Died of a Non Combat Death while Stationed with Naval Security Forces in Bahrain (April 20, 2008)

Disabled Army Veteran Felicia Reeves Found Hanging in a New Jersey Motel Room; Homicide Task Force’s Probe of Cause of Death Upholds Suicide Finding (August 19, 2015)

Marine Corps Spouse Brittany Killgore Held Captive, Tortured, Raped, and Murdered After Refusing Sex; 3 BDSM Cult Members Sentenced to Life (April 14, 2012)

Fort Bragg Army Spc. Kelli Bordeaux Disappeared; Convicted Sex Offender Nicholas Holbert Sentenced to Life in Prison for Murder (April 14, 2012)

Army Pvt. Rosa Martinez Found Murdered at Fort Dix; Pvt. Jose Aponte Pleaded Guilty at Court Martial, Sentenced to 40 Years in Prison (April 11, 1987)

Evidence Reveals Army Reserve Recruiter Adam Arndt Murdered High School Student & Recruit Michelle Miller, Then Killed Self; Army Claims Double Suicide (April 8, 2013)

Rube Goldberg and Military Justice (Eugene Fidell, Just Security, April 6, 2020)

Incomplete data hindering criminal investigations of DoD uniformed employees (Federal News Network, March 20, 2020)

Marine Corps LCpl Riley Schultz Found Dead at Camp Pendleton Entry Control Point; Death Ruled Suicide by Self-Inflicted Gunshot Wound But Family Disputes Findings (March 15, 2019)

Cold Case: Air Force Reservist SrA Blanca Luna Discovered Stabbed to Death in Base Lodging at Sheppard AFB in Texas (March 7, 2008)

Sexual Assault is the Latest Witch Hunt in America’s History: Guilt By Accusation and Public Shaming is the New Norm, and It’s Wrong

img_7219

History of  Witch Hunts in America, located at the Salem Witch Museum, Massachusetts

Society has a tendency to respond in a crisis oriented fashion to a moral panic. After “The Invisible War” gaslighted America, all women soldiers were victims and all male soldiers were predators. This has been a repeated cycle after every sexual assault scandal. The media narratives reflect this and continue to perpetuate the myths typically choosing a blonde white female as the ‘victim’. But that’s not how it works in real life and male victims of crime in the military set both the filmmakers and the media straight. The momentum died off so they created another film about college sexual assault and tried again creating a female versus male division. No one really knows the statistics at the college campuses but in the military, the majority of victims of sexual assault and homicide are men. We care about the men just as much as we care about the women. We care about facts and evidence and have learned that the devil is in the details.

Learn more:
Rape Culture is a ‘Panic Where Paranoia, Censorship, and False Accusations Flourish’
A Complete List of the 35 Basic Military Training Instructors Court Martialed in the Lackland Air Force Base Sex Scandal
Minnesota football rape case emblematic of campus witch-hunt culture
Rape Culture in the West is as Real as ‘Witchcraft in Salem’
A Brief History of the Salem Witch Trials
Defending Sexual Assault Cases Animation


In this video, a former D.A. (now criminal defense lawyer) explains the law of rape, penalties and sentencing, and common legal strategies to fight the case. Each year, countless innocent people get wrongfully arrested for rape and sexual assault. Sometimes there was a genuine misunderstanding between the accuser and the accused as to the issue of consent. Other times, the alleged victim makes up false allegations out of anger, jealousy or spite towards the accused. A conviction for Penal Code 261 can bring years, sometimes life in prison. It’s important in these situations to have an attorney and defense investigator who can scrutinize the background of the accuser and expose a fabricated story for what it it.

Violent Crime, Non Combat Death & Suicide at United States Military Bases

large

*Research not complete.

My experiences as a victim of crime in the United States military inspired me to do the work I do today as a military justice policy analyst. Not only did I witness first hand how a predator operates but I witnessed multiple predator types in real time while serving my country. If these people committed these acts of crimes at work in the civilian world, they would have been in jail or I would have been rich after taking my employer to civil court. Well maybe not because the deck is stacked against the accuser but we do in fact have a civilian justice system that allows us to hold others accountable, while it simultaneously protects the due process rights of the accused. This cannot be said of the military justice system. There is no guarantee a military Commander will do anything with a crime report let alone process the felony crime effectively. We do not want a justice system where one man or woman decides whether to do nothing, give a non judicial punishment for a felony crime, or railroad the accused or accuser. We do want a justice system where we can hold our employer accountable without roadblocks from the Pentagon, Congress, and the Feres Doctrine. We cannot effectively tackle the violent crime issue in the military until the victims of crimes, like sexual assault and domestic violence, feel safe enough to report. Crime victims have expressed that they do not want to report crimes to a Commander for fear of retaliation. The Department of Defense admitted that of those of who did report the crime, 62% perceived that they faced retaliation. If service members felt safe enough to report, it could help us prevent homicide, suicide, and non combat death.

If we think about violent crime committed by military personnel compared to violent crime statistics in the United States (reference above graph), at first glance it appears the military has a homicide ‘issue’ among the ranks. Please see the below links for a sample of crime on some of the U.S. military bases. All military bases worldwide will eventually be included in this research. And the research for sexual assault, rape, domestic violence, and physical assault specifically has not been conducted yet either. Because the research is far from being complete, it is too early to make any assumptions so I will put the data in one place and let you come to your own conclusions. But if military crime mirrors civilian crime statistics, one can deduce that if the military has a lot of homicide, there is even more rape. Currently the number one concern in the military is a Commander’s ability to give a non judicial punishment for a felony crime. A Commander can bypass the courts martial process simply by punishing and/or discharging the accused with a preponderance of the evidence. This does nothing to protect our military personnel and the civilians who live near our bases in America and worldwide. Predators do not discriminate. They are just as likely to harm civilians as they are military personnel. They know their rights and they know that jurisdiction issues and lack of communication among law enforcement agencies will help prolong getting caught. We need to be one step ahead.

We can’t get real violent crime numbers for the military bases unless we include those who died of non combat deaths while they were deployed. Veterans Noonie Fortin and Ann Wright inspired me to initially look into the non combat deaths of female soldiers overseas because they observed the unusually high number of female soldiers who died of non combat deaths during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Their chief concern was that although the military labels a non combat death as a suicide, there are suspicions that some female soldiers were murdered, like LaVena Johnson, Amy Tirador, and Ciara Durkin. I did the research on every single female soldier who died from non combat deaths overseas and their concerns are valid. My research on non combat deaths in Iraq alone revealed that roughly 30% of female soldiers died as a result of homicide, suicide, and other unknown causes. I am working on collecting the data for male soldiers who died from non combat related injuries in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other areas. I started with 2010 so we can get the most recent cases but I will go back to September 11, 2001 in the next phase of data collection. The first male soldier non combat death case I found in 2010 was an unsolved homicide. His name was SSG Anton Phillips and he was stabbed to death in Afghanistan. Further research in this area has uncovered that non combat deaths of male soldiers are just as prevalent.

Learn more:
The US Military Recruited Violent Felons to Support the War Efforts
Non Combat Deaths of Female Soldiers in the US Military (Afghanistan)
Non Combat Deaths of Female Soldiers in the US Military (Iraq)
Non Combat Deaths of Female Soldiers in the US Military (Other Areas)
Violent Crime, Non Combat Death & Suicide at Fort Bragg, North Carolina (US Army)
Violent Crime, Non Combat Death & Suicide at Fort Campbell, Kentucky (US Army)
Violent Crime, Non Combat Death & Suicide at Fort Carson, Colorado (US Army)
Violent Crime, Non Combat Death & Suicide at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington
Violent Crime, Non Combat Death & Suicide at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas
Violent Crime at Fort Wainwright, Alaska (US Army)
Violent Crime at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska
A List of Soldiers Targeted & Murdered for the Servicemen’s Group Life Insurance Benefits
Rep Nikki Tsongas & Rep Mike Turner Host Educational Caucus: Improving Treatment Resources for Male Survivors of Military Sexual Trauma
An Open Letter to the Senate and House of Representatives in Support of the Military Justice Improvement Act
Letter of Support for Save Our Heroes in Our Shared Quest for Military Justice Reform & Constitutional Rights

Letter of Support for Save Our Heroes in Our Shared Quest for Military Justice Reform & Constitutional Rights

quote-walter-cronkite-in-seeking-truth-you-have-to-get-76354

October 1, 2016

U.S. House of Representatives
United States Senate
Washington, DC

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a letter of support for Save Our Heroes. We recognized immediately that Save Our Heroes and victims of crimes both want similar changes in the military justice system. Save Our Heroes is asking for three specific legislative/policy changes to restore fundamental fairness in the military justice system:

1. Remove all Commanders authority from decision-making in the legal system.
2. The number of panel members should be increased to 12 for General Courts Martial.
3. Any conviction at Courts Martial shall require a unanimous verdict.

These requests by Save Our Heroes are similar to the overall changes that victims of crimes in the military have lobbied for, specifically that Commanders be removed from the reporting and decision-making process because of fear of bias, lack of investigative training, and the power to discharge and/or punish with the stroke of a pen. Save Our Heroes is requesting the same changes because ultimately both the victims and accused are looking for a military justice system that mirrors the civilian justice system while respecting the need of the Commanding Officer to ensure discipline is maintained within their command. We want a justice system where crimes are reported to legal authorities and not a Commander who is an authority figure with the power to impact your entire life. We want a justice system where crimes will be investigated thoroughly by unbiased military criminal investigative organizations looking for the truth. We want a justice system that provides the same constitutional rights as those provided in the civilian justice system. Save Our Heroes is specifically asking for changes that are commonplace in the civilian justice system, like a jury of twelve of our peers and a unanimous verdict. Our military deserves no less.

Victims of crimes in the military are asking for a military justice system that provides due process for the accuser and the accused. Crime victims want the ability to go to trial based on an independent prosecutor’s decision to charge because there was sufficient evidence to move forward with a case. Crime victims want those people who level false accusations, and engage in other abuses of the process, to be held accountable. While we recognize that false reports represent a small percentage of total reports (between 2-8 percent based on Bureau of Justice Statistics data), those who do falsely accuse are hurting the real victims of these crimes and should be held accountable through the same impartial military justice system. Both the accusers and the accused are asking for due process, which is best accomplished by a system that mirrors the civilian justice system. Currently, Commanders have control of the process when the accused, accuser, defense attorneys, and prosecutors should have control over the process.

Sincerely,

Jennifer Norris, Military Justice for All
Stephanie Schroeder, US Human Rights Network & UN Board Member
Brian Lewis, Men Recovering from Military Sexual Trauma

Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton Picks Virginia U.S. Senator Tim Kaine As VP Running Mate; Kaine Blocked Military Justice Improvement Act in Historic Vote (July 22, 2016)

579232cae10ae.image

Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA)

Hillary Clinton picked Senator Tim Kaine of Virginia as her Vice Presidential running mate. What is interesting about this pick is at one point in a Time magazine article in 2014, Clinton showed public support of the Military Justice Improvement Act, yet she chooses Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) as her vice presidential running mate who has been blocking the bill since 2013. Of course Senator Angus King (I-ME) endorses this choice since he too has been blocking the due process bill sponsored by Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Senator Susan Collins, Senator Rand Paul, Senator Ted Cruz, and many other bi-partisan Senators advocating for constitutional rights for military personnel and veterans.

“The move was surprising in that it means that if she becomes President, the normally hawkish Clinton would go against the advice of military brass and remove the cases from the chain of command. It also must have had a little bit of a silver lining dig at McCaskill, who endorsed Barack Obama over Clinton in 2008.” ~Time (2014)

Continue reading

The Pendulum Has Swung: Defending Yourself Against False Allegations in Senator Claire McCaskill’s Military Justice System (June 4, 2016)

If you or someone you know has been falsely accused of a crime,
please contact Save Our Heroes.

This animated video describes the obstacles faced by military members who are wrongly or falsely accused of sexual assault. From the recent changes to the UCMJ to the barriers built around the alleged victim, wrongly and falsely accused service members face an uphill battle defending themselves. Court-martial defense lawyer Will M. Helixon, with decades of experience as a sex crimes prosecutor, can team with the military detailed counsel to level the playing field and defend the rights of the wrongly and falsely accused. (www.helixongroup.com)

Learn more:
Newsmax: Rowan Scarborough On False Complaints Of Sexual Abuse In Military (May 14, 2013)
Letter of Support for Save Our Heroes in Our Shared Quest for Military Justice Reform & Constitutional Rights
Senate Armed Services Committee Sexual Assault in the Military Hearings (March 6, 2019)

Army Captain Nathan Smith Sued Barack Obama Claiming ISIS Fight is Illegal, Unconstitutional, and US President Lacks Authorization (May 4, 2016)

screen-shot-2016-12-31-at-8-49-12-pm

Captain Nathan Smith, U.S. Army

Army Intelligence Officer Captain Nathan Smith, 28, is suing President Barack Obama in federal court claiming the war with ISIS/ISIL is unconstitutional and illegal. Captain Smith alleges President Obama does not have authorization to engage in a fight with Syria. At the time of the case filing in May 2016, Captain Smith was overseas deployed to Camp Arifjan in Kuwait. The original suit was rejected in November 2016 ruling that Captain Smith ‘didn’t have standing to sue and that disputes over war powers are best left to Congress and the president to fight out in the political arena.’ In April 2017, Captain Smith asked an appeals court to take the case and settle the issue once and for all.

In his own words:

Nathan Smith’s Lawsuit Against the President of the United States on Rackets: Who Are the Real Gangsters? Podcast

Why I Sued My Commander-in-Chief, President Obama

“As a soldier, I thought the war in Syria was illegal, as I do now. That’s why Trump is right to get out.” -Nathan Smith, Army veteran

Related Links:
Nathan Smith, US Army v. Barack Obama
Army Captain sues Obama over ISIS fight
Is the U.S. War Against ISIS Illegal?
Army Captain sues Obama over ISIS fight
An Army Captain Takes Obama to Court Over ISIS Fight
Deployed Army captain sues Obama over ISIS fight
U.S. Army Captain Is Suing Obama Over Legality Of The War Against ISIS
Army Captain Sues Obama For Unconstitutional War Against ISIS
Army Captain Sues Obama over Islamic State War
Army captain sues Obama over lack of ISIS war authorization
28-Year-Old Army Officer Suing Obama Over ISIS
Soldier Suing Obama Over ISIS War Is Doing Fine, Lawyer Says
Army captain sues President Obama over claims the war on ISIS is illegal
Army captain sues President Obama, saying he lacks authority to fight ISIS
Who Is Capt. Nathan Michael Smith? US Intelligence Officer Sues President Barack Obama Over Legality Of ISIS Fight
‘My conscience bothered me’: Army captain sues Obama over ‘illegal war’ on the Islamic State
My Brother’s Challenge to the Undeclared War Against ISIS
Analysis of Lawsuit Challenging War Against ISIL
Constitution Check: Has the U.S. war against ISIS in Syria been illegal from the start?
Does the president think his own war is illegal?
The Dangers of the Ever More Powerful Presidency
When The U.S. Military Strikes, White House Points To A 2001 Measure
Suit Calling War on ISIS Illegal Is Rejected
Soldier who supports war against Islamic State files lawsuit calling it illegal
US Daesh fighter in Syria poses dilemma for White House
Yale prof presents case against Trump
AUMF: The Latest Weapon in America’s Illegal Perpetual War
Judges ask if challenge to Trump’s war powers is moot after waiting 6 months to rule
Nathan Smith’s Lawsuit Against the President of the United States
Why I Sued My Commander-in-Chief, President Obama