blog home Military Defense Fort Hood Gunman Conducts His Own Defense, Allegedly Seeking Death Penalty

Fort Hood Gunman Conducts His Own Defense, Allegedly Seeking Death Penalty

By Joseph Low on August 21, 2013

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The murder trial against the Army psychiatrist accused of firing on soldiers on a Military base in Fort Hood, Texas finally began recently. The presiding Army judge Col. Tara Osborn ruled that the accused gunman would be allowed to conduct his own defense, as long as his former lawyers would stand by if he needed help. The suspect faces 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder.

After only two days the trial was halted yet again. The standby defense team that was ordered to assist the suspect argued that the suspect is using a “repugnant” defense strategy that forces them to violate their ethical obligations as a defense counsel. Lt. Col. Kris Poppe and the other standby lawyers requested to take over the case once more or have their roles minimized rather than contribute to a strategy they oppose.

Throughout the proceedings, the suspect has reportedly declined to cross-examine witnesses and has mostly remained silent.

“It becomes clear his goal is to remove impediments or obstacles to the death penalty and is working toward a death penalty,” said Poppe.

Osborn ultimately denied the lawyers’ requests, saying, “I’ve given you an order … and that relieves you of every ethical liability.”

The unique circumstances of the Fort Hood gunman trial illustrate the difference that an experienced legal defense, well-versed in military law, can have on the proceedings. For military personnel who may be falsely accused and need a chance to tell their side of the story, relying on an accomplished San Diego Military criminal defense attorney, such as Joseph H. Low IV, can be a crucial step toward protecting their future.

As a former Marine, Joseph H. Low IV understands that United States Military trials are complex. If you are facing criminal charges in any branch of the Military, arm yourself with a skilled attorney who will fight for you. Call The Law Firm of Joseph H. Low IV at (888) 454-5569 for a free consultation.

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