Fri., March 24, 2017

OTTAWA—The Governor General’s office says a retired soldier who was court-martialled for wearing Afghanistan and Somalia medals and parachute wings he wasn’t entitled to at a Remembrance Day ceremony has lost his membership in the Order of Military Merit.

Richard Fancy was a member of the regular forces between 1984 and 2010, when he joined the reserves with the Halifax Rifles.

He became a master warrant officer in the regiment and received the Order of Military Merit in October 2014, a month before the Remembrance Day incident in Halifax.

In May 2016, Fancy pleaded guilty at a court martial to three counts of conduct to the prejudice of good order and discipline and was reduced in rank to warrant officer and fined $300.

The decorations he wore improperly credited him with service in Somalia and Afghanistan and with being a paratrooper.

Membership in the Order of Military Merit recognizes exceptional service or performance of duty, but can be stripped from a recipient by an order of the Governor General.

At the court martial, military judge Col. Mario Dutil wrote that the circumstances of the case demonstrated “a lack of integrity and respect for the profound meaning of medals and decorations for the Canadian Armed Forces and for those who have gained the right to wear them.”

He said the fact that Fancy held a senior leadership position at the time was an aggravating factor.

However, the judge added that Fancy admitted guilt and had an otherwise clean record.

JANUARY 6, 2017

A Robins Air Force Base airman accused of killing his fiancee and her unborn child for $1 million in insurance money is scheduled to go on trial Monday.

Charles Amos Wilson III, 30, a support member of the 461st Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, is charged with premeditated murder of 30-year-old Tameda Ferguson in 2013.

Ferguson, who was 8 1/2 months pregnant, was found shot to death inside her Dawson home about 100 miles from Robins Air Force Base.

 Wilson was arrested on charges of murder and feticide after an investigation by the GBI and the Terrell County Sheriff’s Office.

The case later was turned over to the Air Force at its request. Wilson’s military charges include premeditated murder and death of an unborn child. He may face the death penalty if convicted of premeditated murder.

The Air Force has not executed anyone convicted under the death penalty in more than 50 years, though. Senior Airman Andrew Witt is the only Air Force member now on death row. Witt, who was also stationed at Robins Air Force Base, was convicted of killing a fellow airman and his wife and nearly killing a third airman in an incident on base in 2004.

In the first court-martial proceeding, a military jury found Wilson not guilty June 2 of felony murder and aggravated arson in the death of his friend, Demetrius Hardy, in an alleged insurance fraud scheme. The jury also found Wilson not guilty of conspiracy, burning with intent to defraud and obstruction of justice.

Infini Hardy, the widow of the fire victim, testified against Wilson at his trial. But his defense attorneys argued that she and her husband acted independently of Wilson in a burglary that went terribly wrong. The October 2011 fire was allegedly set to cover up the burglary.

Wilson’s attorneys also argued that Infini Hardy only implicated Wilson two years after the fire when she was indicted by a Houston County grand jury and faced incarceration.

On Oct. 3, Hardy pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and one count of arson in Houston County Superior Court. Judge Katherine K. Lumsden sentenced Hardy to one year in prison and 19 years on probation as part of a negotiated plea agreement.

Hardy was given credit for time served — 21 days in jail in October 2013 — before she made bond pending trial. She was also ordered to have no contact with Wilson.

In the second court-martial proceeding, jurors convicted Wilson on June 10 of striking retired Tech. Sgt. Denise Forrest after he became angry in an argument over a phone. He and Forrest were dating at the time of the July 20, 2012, incident.

Wilson was sentenced to six months of confinement, a reduction in rank from senior airman, and received credit for time served pending trial.

Jurors also found Wilson not guilty of the other charges against him in the July 20, 2012, incident.


November 4, 2016: 6:02 PM ET

A jury found Rolling Stone magazine liable for defamation on Friday over its explosive and later discredited story about a gang rape at a University of Virginia fraternity house.

The magazine’s publisher and the reporter, Sabrina Rubin Erdely, were also found liable.

The jury found in favor of Nicole Eramo, a school administrator who said that the story portrayed her as callous and insensitive to the plight of an alleged rape victim. She is seeking $7.5 million. The jury will return Monday to consider damages.

In the story, “A Rape on Campus,” a woman identified only as Jackie claimed that she had been beaten and raped by seven men at the Phi Kappa Psi house. Eramo said that she was “the chief villain of the story,” in part because she was described as discouraging Jackie from going to the police.

Eramo wept in court as the verdict was read.


The 9,000-word article was met with outrage nationwide when it was published in November 2014, and the school suspended all fraternities.

But Jackie’s claims were quickly questioned. Charlottesville police found no evidence that the rape happened. And journalists and readers were stunned to learn that Erdely never spoke to the men identified as Jackie’s attackers.

The jury found that the magazine and publisher, Wenner Media, were liable for defamation for three parts of the story after they republished it several weeks later with an editor’s note. The note acknowledged doubts about Jackie’s account but did not change or remove any part of the original story.

Our law firm was recently trained on identifying and confronting liars by renowned expert Susan Constantine


Alexandra and Michael with Susan Constantine at her October 2016 course in Atlanta, GA

In October 2016, Michael Waddington and Alexandra González-Waddington, traveled to Atlanta, GA for an intensive course called “Evaluating Truthfulness: Never be Lied to Again.” The course is the first of a series that teaches lawyers and law enforcement how to identify deception using verbal and non-verbal cues.

The course also covered detecting deception in written statements based on analysis of keywords, repetitive language, deceptive and evasive language, and other aspects of written statements to get to the bottom of what’s true, what’s not, and where some of the story is missing. The program was sponsored by the Georgia Bar Association.

The instructor, Susan Constantine, MPsy, is the world’s leading authority on body language as it pertains to deception detection. For the past decade, she has been a go-to expert and jury consultant, analyzing the body language of witnesses, jurors, and public figures. The media regularly turns to Constantine for analysis of U.S. and global political leaders, celebrities, and suspects in highly publicized trials. She has trained thousands of lawyers and investigators across the country. Click here to visit her website.

The training focused on giving lawyers  a marked advantage in skillfully searching for the truth by exploring speech, voice, body and face patterns to determine when a person deviates from his or her normal behavior in an attempt to deceive you. These tips are used by law enforcement agents, intelligence agencies, polygraph examiners, and psychologists to confidently establish rapport and control, and ultimately detect deception with accuracy.

The full day course covered:

  • The 7-Steps to obtaining the Truth
  • How to spot a liar
  • How to read verbal objections before they are expressed
  • How to elicit the truth with minimal encouragers
  • How to uncover one’s hidden agenda
  • How to detect concealed emotions from world renowned Dr. David Matsumoto
  • How to calibrate, base-line, and norm others
  • How to build instant rapport in mediation, depositions, sales, negotiations, and trial
  • Finding holes in the story
  • Understanding how emotions, partiality, and biases are affecting those involved
  • Get thorough, perceptive analysis of verbal and nonverbal communication

NEW BOOK – The State of Criminal Justice 2016

In August 2016, firm partners, Michael Waddington and Alexandra González-Waddington, wrote a chapter on military law for the American Bar Association’s new book,  The State of Criminal Justice 2016.

Book Summary:

american-bar-association-logoThis publication examines and reports on the major issues, trends and significant changes in the criminal justice system. The 2016 volume contains 20 chapters focusing on specific aspects of the criminal justice field, with summaries of all of the adopted official ABA policies passed in 2015-2016 that address criminal justice issues.

Authors from across the criminal justice field provide essays on topics ranging from white collar crime to international law to juvenile justice. The State of Criminal Justice is an annual publication that examines and reports on the major issues, trends and significant changes in the criminal justice system during a given year. As one of the cornerstones of the Criminal Justice Section’s work, this publication serves as an invaluable resource for policy-makers, academics, and students of the criminal justice system alike.

Edited by Prof. Mark E. Wojcik, The John Marshall Law School.

This book was published by the American Bar Association (ABA), The ABA is one of the world’s largest voluntary professional organizations, with nearly 400,000 members and more than 3,500 entities.  It is committed to doing what only a national association of attorneys can do: serving our members, improving the legal profession, eliminating bias and enhancing diversity, and advancing the rule of law throughout the United States and around the world.

About the Authors:

msw-cropedMichael Waddington is a criminal defense lawyer who has successfully defended cases in military courtrooms around the world, including Japan, South Korea, Germany, Iraq, Bahrain, Italy, England, and across the United States. Heʼs been involved in some of the highest profile court martial cases—from the “War on Terror” to the “War on Sex Assault”—and has been reported on and quoted by hundreds of major media sources worldwide.

He is also the best-selling author of The Art of Trial Warfare: Winning at Trial Using Sun Tzu’s The Art of War.  He has provided consultation services to CNN, 60 Minutes, ABC Nightline, the BBC, CBS, and the Golden Globe winning TV series, “The Good Wife.” He appeared in a major CNN Documentary, 2009ʼs “Killings at the Canal,” and some of his cases have been the subject of books and movies, including the Academy Award Winning Documentary “Taxi to the Dark Side,” and the 2013 documentary, “The Kill Team.”Since 2013, Mr. Waddington has been an annual contributor to the American Bar Associationʼs publication, “The State of Criminal Justice.” He is also a fellow of the American Board of Criminal Lawyers (ABCL).

agw-alexandra-headshot-grey-nacdlAlexandra González-Waddington is a founding partner of the González & Waddington Law Firm, and a Georgia Registered mediator. She has represented and defended hundreds of defendants charged with sexual crimes and has worked on some of the most notorious war crime cases stemming from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.

A former Public Defender in the State of Georgia, Alexandra has worked on various types of cases, including rapes, larcenies, and white collar crimes. She graduated from Temple Beasley School of Law in Philadelphia, PA where she successfully completed Templeʼs Nationally ranked Integrated Trial Advocacy Program.

In 2015 and 2016, she wrote chapters in the American Bar Association (ABA) books, “The State of Criminal Justice.” This annual publication examines major issues, trends and significant changes in the criminal justice system and is one of the cornerstones of the ABAʼs Criminal Justice Sectionʼs work. This publication serves as an invaluable resource for policy-makers, academics, and students of the criminal justice system.


The Seattle Times

Maj. Eric Smith will retire from the U.S. Army Medical Command early next year with a pension and other benefits due from 20 years of honorable service that included front-line duty in Iraq.

But before he leaves the military, Smith wants something else: the right to again practice Army medicine.

Smith lost his privileges at Madigan Army Medical Center in 2011, when a urine test came back positive for cocaine. The test results were disputed, and the conviction that sent him to prison for seven months was set aside.

“I was innocent, and I am still being punished because I can’t return to my profession,” said Smith.

If he doesn’t regain his privileges to practice Army medicine, Smith, 46, fears it will be hard to find work as a doctor when he transitions to civilian life.



The Army has filed a report about the action with the National Practitioner Data Bank, a clearinghouse that can be accessed by employers. That report still cites the positive cocaine test, according to documents reviewed by The Seattle Times.

So, while Smith still holds licenses to practice medicine in Washington and Arizona, potential employers considering Smith will be able to view that report.

In a statement to The Seattle Times, a Madigan spokesmen wrote that all decisions to take away hospital privileges receive legal review, and are designed to ensure that patients receive safe, quality care and providers receive due process.

When Smith was released from prison in 2013, he stepped up a quest — chronicled in storiesjointly reported by The Seattle Times and The News Tribune — to disprove the findings that destroyed his career.

He has racked up some important victories.

In July 2015, the Army Court of Appeals set aside his conviction because his defense attorney at his court-martial failed to introduce significant evidence — a follow-up test of a hair follicle. This lab test was done within the time frame that any cocaine markers should have still been in his system, but came up negative.

In March, Smith took another step toward vindication when an Army Board of Inquiry, consisting of three senior officers, convened for two days to decide whether to dismiss him from the Army prematurely, possibly with an other-than-honorable discharge.

The panel ruled that Smith should be allowed to stay in the service until retirement.

That decision came after the board reviewed evidence indicating the urinalysis used to convict Smith had been contaminated by DNA of an unknown second individual. That evidence was gained through a second analysis of the same urine sample — conducted at Smith’s request and expense — by a private laboratory.

How that contamination occurred has not been determined, and the Army has rejected Smith’s requests to investigate the handling of the urine specimen. But at the board hearing, a chemist testified the initial results should have been thrown out, according to a transcript of his remarks included in the board report reviewed by The Seattle Times.

“You don’t know where the cocaine is coming from. You have a sample that’s compromised,” testified Delmar Price, whose past work included forensic DNA analysis for Defense Department laboratories.

At the time of the drug test, Smith already had reported that he struggled with alcoholism and completed a treatment program.

The Army — in refusing to reinstate his privileges — alleged he failed to respond to that treatment, but the board found that a preponderance of evidence did not support that charge because Smith “had complied with all rehabilitation efforts.”

Smith hoped the board findings would persuade Madigan officials to review what had evolved from a suspension to a permanent revocation of his privileges to practice medicine at Army facilities.

But Army officials have declined to reconsider the case.

In the statement released by Madigan, the spokesman wrote that the board inquiry is “entirely unrelated” to the “quality assurance” action taken against Smith.

Smith continues to spend his days on administrative duty, shifting from office to office and forbidden to see patients.

Smith notes that none of the complaints cited to suspend his privileges involved his treatment of patients.

And he is still pushing the Army to let him practice medicine.

In August, he filed a complaint with the Inspector General’s Office about his case, which has since been referred for a Defense Department investigation

“Helping others is kind of my reason for being,” Smith said. “We all have a niche. This is my niche.”

Read more here:

The U.S. Air Force is moving to dismiss the rape case of a colonel found dead in his home, an official said.

While the legal proceeding against Col. Eugene Caughey is technically still in progress, a physical trial won’t occur and the case will ultimately be dismissed, an official told on Thursday.

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Caughey, 46, the former vice commander of the 50th Space Wing atSchriever Air Force Base, Colorado, who was awaiting court-martial on allegations of rape and adultery, was found dead Sunday at his home. The Colorado Springs Police Department is investigating the death as an apparent suicide.

Caughey was assigned to Air Force Space Command staff at Peterson. His court-martial was originally set to begin in August but he was granted a continuance. He was to start the proceeding Oct. 17 on charges of rape, assault, adultery and other lewd acts dating to 2013.

The 23-year veteran was formally charged Dec. 10 with rape and assault. He allegedly used “unlawful force” to hold a victim “against the wall and floor” while committing a sexual act sometime “in late 2014 or early 2015,” according to his charge sheet.

The colonel also took photos of his genitals while in uniform, and committed six counts of adultery, the documents state. | Sep 29, 2016 |



A former U.S. Marine lieutenant who has accused Air Force Lt. Joshua Seefried of sexually assaulting him in a New York hotel room in 2012 testified at a pre-court martial hearing for Seefried on Monday that he has served recently as a military trainer in forums about sexual assault.
The former Marine testified that he served as a panelist in military forums addressing the issue of sexual assault in the military prior to his discharge from the Marines last year, which he said was based on his decision not to re-enlist for another term. The former Marine discussed his role as a trainer and occasional speaker on sexual assault issues in response to questions by Seefried’s attorney, Richard Stevens.
Stevens didn’t say why he raised the issue of the former Marine’s role as a trainer on the subject of sexual assault during the part of the hearing that was open to the public.

But Stevens, among other questions, asked the former Marine, “Did you discuss your case or your personal experience in these trainings?” “No,” the former Marine replied.
Stevens said later in the hearing after the former Marine completed his testimony that the defense is concerned that the former Marine could have developed a false assumption that consent for sex was not possible under certain circumstances.

Air Force prosecutors have charged Seefried, who in 2010 cofounded the LGBT military group OutServe, of engaging in wrongful and abusive sexual conduct and forcible sodomy. The charges stem from accusations by the former Marine that Seefried allegedly performed sexual acts on him in Seefried’s New York hotel room while the then Marine was intoxicated and unable to give consent.

During an April 4 arraignment for Seefried’s case, his military attorney disclosed that Seefried had submitted a request to resign from the Air Force in lieu of a court martial, but the attorney, Capt. Allen Abrams, didn’t disclose the response to that request. Sources familiar with the case, however, said Air Force prosecutors and Burke agreed to the resignation request but were overruled by Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James, who insisted that the case go to court martial, which has been scheduled to begin on Aug. 22.


July 27, 2016 at 1:30 pm EDT | by Lou Chibbaro Jr.

Maj. Mark Thompson at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., earlier this year. (Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post)

Maj. Mark Thompson at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., earlier this year. (Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post)

June 21 at 11:45 AM
The military announced ­Tuesday that Marine Maj. Mark Thompson — who has long ­insisted that he was falsely accused of having sex with two U.S. Naval Academy students — will face a court-martial on allegations that he lied repeatedly in an effort to prove his innocence.After revelations about Thompson’s case appeared in The Washington Post, the ­military charged him in April with making a false official statement and conduct unbecoming an ­officer and a gentleman. The former history instructor is ­accused of lying to a group of Marines who reviewed his case, pushing a comrade to lie for him at Thompson’s 2013 court-martial and lying to The Post about the two students.

Thompson will probably be arraigned in the coming weeks before facing trial this fall, ­according to Marine spokesman Rex Runyon.

At a preliminary hearing last month, Maj. Babu Kaza, the lead prosecutor, described Thompson’s career as a “fraud” and argued that he should be ­imprisoned for nearly three years, fined $200,000 and ­expelled from the service.

 Thompson, 46, has maintained that he was unfairly ­convicted of sexual misconduct in 2013, but a Post investigation revealed in March that the ­19-year veteran had been ­dishonest when he testified under oath to an administrative board deciding whether he should be kicked out of the service.


PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. (AP) – The Air Force has scheduled an August court-martial for a high-ranking officer charged with rape, assault and adultery.

Officials said Tuesday the trial of Col. Eugene Caughey will begin Aug. 8.

Caughey is accused of raping a woman in late 2014 or early 2014 at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado.

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His civilian attorney, Ryan Coward, declined to comment Wednesday.

Caughey is also charged with indecent filming or photography, dereliction of duty, failure to obey a lawful order and conduct unbecoming an officer.
Prosecutors have said he committed adultery several times, photographed his exposed genitals while in uniform and groped women on two occasions.

Caughey’s most recent assignment was with the Air Force Space Command at Peterson Air Force Base. Peterson and Schriever are both near Colorado Springs, Colorado.