Collateral estoppel

courtmartialdefenselawyer193When an issue of ultimate fact has been determined by a valid and final judgment, that issue cannot be litigated in the future (between the same parties). See Ashe v. Swenson , 397 U.S. 436, 443 (1970).

  1. BUT “collateral estoppel does not preclude use of otherwise admissible evidence even though it was previously introduced on charges of which an accused has been acquitted. The questions to be decided are whether the evidence is relevant (Mil. R. Evid. 401) and whether the probative value of the proffered evidence is outweighed by its prejudicial effect (Mil. R. Evid. 403).” United States v. Hicks , 24 M.J. 3 (C.M.A. 1987).
  • The doctrine of collateral estoppels cannot be invoked by an accused where the successive prosecution is by a separate sovereign. United States v. Schneider , 38 M.J. 387, 392 (C.M.A. 1993).