Skip to main content

LATEST UPDATES: Tracking COVID-19 | Vaccines | Racial Injustice

Appeals Court Hears Camp Pendleton Marine’s Case

Photo credit: Facebook

Lawrence Hutchins III

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces is hearing oral arguments today in the case of ex-Camp Pendleton Marine Lawrence Hutchins III, who was convicted of murdering a man in Hamdaniya, Iraq in 2006.

At issue is whether Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus influenced the case illegally with statements he made in the public venue. The court will also consider whether the Naval Criminal Investigative Service violated Hutchins’ constitutional rights when investigators questioned him despite his request for an attorney.

Hutchins’ lawyer, Maj. Babu Kaza, told U-T San Diego:

“If the court agrees that the secretary of the Navy acted unlawfully, it would be a landmark decision, and a victory not just for Sgt. Hutchins, but for every service member who could one day find themselves at the mercy of the military justice system."

Hutchins has served roughly five years of an 11 year sentence at the MCAS Miramar brig. The military accused him of being the leader of a squad that kidnapped a 52-year-old unarmed Iraq man from his home, marched him to a ditch, and then executed him.


San Diego News Now podcast branding

San Diego news; when you want it, where you want it. Get local stories on politics, education, health, environment, the border and more. New episodes are ready weekday mornings. Hosted by Anica Colbert and produced by KPBS, San Diego and the Imperial County's NPR and PBS station.

  • Need help keeping up with the news that matters most? Get the day's top news — ranging from local to international — straight to your inbox each weekday morning.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Curious San Diego banner

Want more KPBS news?
Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or sign up for our newsletters.

To view PDF documents, Download Acrobat Reader.