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Air Force officer in brig may be punished for talking to reporter

December 29, 2015 (Photo Credit: Air Force)

 

An Air Force officer being held at Naval Consolidated Brig Miramar, California, may face disciplinary actions for talking to an Air Force Times reporter by telephone, a brig spokesman said.

Maj. Clarence Anderson III called Air Force Times on Monday and talked with a reporter about his plea for clemency.

A Navy instruction prohibits prisoners from talking to media by telephone, said Brewster Schenck, a spokesman for the brig.

"A disciplinary report was written this afternoon, but it's not yet been investigated, so it's in process," Schenck told Air Force Times on Tuesday.

Schenck also said that prison officials looked into whether to move Anderson to segregation – for prisoners in a discipline status or awaiting discipline – but ultimately decided not to do so.

Anderson was sentenced in April to 42 months in prison and dismissal from the Air Force after he was found guilty at court-martial of sexual assault and other charges. His attorney has requested that his conviction be set aside.

In a letter obtained by Air Force Times, Anderson’s attorney cites several potential problems with the case, including the allegation that one witness who testified for the alleged victim may have been paid.

At a Dec. 14 post-trial hearing, a military judge reviewed evidence and testimony about whether the witness was paid $10,000, according to an Air Force official familiar with the case. The judge decided not to overturn the verdict or recommend that the convening authority do so, the official said.

Moreover, the judge decided that the evidence of the witness payment “probably would not produce a substantially more favorable result” for Anderson had it been presented at Anderson’s court-martial, the official said. 

Both the witness and Anderson’s attorney declined to comment when contacted by Air Force Times.

Anderson told Air Force Times that he is innocent of the allegations against him. He said he has submitted a clemency package to the convening authority, Lt. Gen. Mark Nowland, commander of 12th Air Force, which outlines the reasons why he should not have been convicted.

 

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