18 September 2007

Bleak House

As the rest of you English majors will remember, Charles Dickens' Bleak House is, in part, the saga of Jarndyce v. Jarndyce, a seemingly never-to-be decided case in England's Chancery. On 30 August, the Navy released for publication its own version, United States v. Davis, No. 9600585 (N.M. Ct. Crim. App. Aug. 30, 2007).

LCDR Davis was convicted in 1995 on mixed pleas of rape and forcible sodomy of a child under 16, rape and forcible sodomy, taking indecent liberties and committing indecent acts with a child under 16. He was sentenced to confinement for life. The case has been to CAAF twice and the NMCCA was reviewing the case again after a rehearing on the sentence. His approved sentence is now 20 years.

The only issue of interest is whether the military judge erred by limiting the sentencing evidence to what existed prior to the date of trial. The NMCCA finds error but refuses to grant relief because the appellant invited the error.

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