Read time: 1 minute

Watada Re-charged

Guardian: (h/t miss kitty) The Army refiled charges Friday against a lieutenant who refused to serve in Iraq, about two weeks after his first court-

watada1.jpg Guardian: (h/t miss kitty)

The Army refiled charges Friday against a lieutenant who refused to serve in Iraq, about two weeks after his first court-martial was declared a mistrial.

First Lt. Ehren Watada, 28, who refused to deploy with his unit last June, faces the same allegations he initially faced - missing movement and conduct unbecoming an officer - and could be sentenced to a dishonorable discharge and six years in prison if convicted. The Army has not set a date for a second court-martial.

``We're back to square one,'' Fort Lewis spokeswoman Leslie Kaye said.

Watada's first trial began early this month but ended abruptly when the judge, Lt. Col. John Head, said he did not believe the soldier fully understood a pretrial agreement he signed admitting elements of the charges. As part of that agreement, the Army dropped two of the charges against him, lowering his potential sentence to four years.

Watada's attorney, Eric Seitz, said he would seek to have the charges dismissed as a violation of the Constitution's protection against double jeopardy.

``When it's not going well for you, you can't just call a mistrial and start over again,'' Seitz said. ``No matter how much lip service they give to wanting to protect my client's rights, that just doesn't exist in the military courts.''

Fort Lewis spokesman Joseph Piek said double jeopardy did not apply in this case because the first trial was never completed.

Can you help us out?

For 16 years we have been exposing Washington lies and untangling media deceit. We work 7 days a week, 16 hours a day for our labor of love, but with rising hosting and associated costs, we need your help! Could you donate $21 for 2021? Please consider a one-time or recurring donation of whatever amount you can spare, or consider subscribing for an ad-free experience. It will be greatly appreciated and help us continue our mission of exposing the real FAKE NEWS!

More C&L Coverage

Discussion

New Commenting System

Our comments are now powered by Insticator. In order to comment you will need to create an Insticator account. The process is quick and simple. Please note that the ability to comment with a C&L site account is no longer available.

We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service (revised 3/17/2016) for information on our posting policy.

Please Do Not Use the Login Link at the Top of the Site.

In order to comment you must use an Insticator account. To register an account, enter your comment and click the post button. A dialog will then appear allowing you create your account.

We will be retiring our Crooks and Liars user account system in January, 2021.

Thank you.
C&L Team