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COA finds Army discipline does not exempt defendant from prosecution

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The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed a trial court denial of a man’s motion to dismiss, rejecting his argument that being reprimanded by the United States Army precludes him from prosecution for the same offense.

In David Hoffman v. State of Indiana, No. 03A01-1104-CR-180, David Hoffman argued that because the Army demoted him in rank for a operating a vehicle while intoxicated, the state should not have been able to prosecute him on the same charge, due to double jeopardy standards.

Hoffman was an active-duty sergeant in the Army stationed at Camp Atterbury north of Columbus, Ind. On Dec. 20, 2009, Hoffman was arrested for operating a vehicle while intoxicated, and the state later charged Hoffman with that offense.

Hoffman alleges that, prior to his criminal trial, the Army took action against him for the same incident.

The appeals court held that because the defendant had failed to provide a complete record, it declined to conclude that the action taken by the military prevented the state from prosecuting him for the same conduct.

Hoffman provided the appeals court with a copy of his reduction in grade of rank. But the appeals court found that the reduction was for failure to complete training, unsatisfactory participation and failure to complete or attend noncommissioned officers education system, respectively.

In the COA opinion, Judge John Baker wrote, “We find that the record lacks any clear evidence to establish that the type of punishment that Hoffman received from the Army was equivalent to a prosecution and, in fact, undermines Hoffman’s assertion that the punishment was for operating a vehicle while intoxicated.”
 

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  2. Unlike the federal judge who refused to protect me, the Virginia State Bar gave me a hearing. After the hearing, the Virginia State Bar refused to discipline me. VSB said that attacking me with the court ADA coordinator had, " all the grace and charm of a drive-by shooting." One does wonder why the VSB was able to have a hearing and come to that conclusion, but the federal judge in Indiana slammed the door of the courthouse in my face.

  3. I agree. My husband has almost the exact same situation. Age states and all.

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  5. Andrew, if what you report is true, then it certainly is newsworthy. If what you report is false, then it certainly is newsworthy. Any journalists reading along??? And that same Coordinator blew me up real good as well, even destroying evidence to get the ordered wetwork done. There is a story here, if any have the moxie to go for it. Search ADA here for just some of my experiences with the court's junk yard dog. https://www.scribd.com/document/299040062/Brown-ind-Bar-memo-Pet-cert Yep, drive by shootings. The lawyers of the Old Dominion got that right. Career executions lacking any real semblance of due process. It is the ISC way ... under the bad shepard's leadership ... and a compliant, silent, boot-licking fifth estate.

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