When Veterans are Defendants

Law Prof Doug Berman at Sentencing Law and Policy:

On Veterans Day, I am thinking about all the veterans who, after serving our country in the military in support of our nation's commitment to liberty and freedom, discover that our sentencing laws give little or no credit for their service.  I specifically have in mind the decorated soldiers Patrick Lett (story here) and Victor Rita (story here), both of whom now have their futures in the hands of appellate courts trying to figure out what Booker really means for federal sentencing.

More broadly, I wonder how many thousands of veterans are subject to all the severe collateral consequences that can often follow a conviction.  For example, I wonder how many veterans are unable to vote because they are disenfranchised by state law or how many veterans cannot live where they want because of residency restrictions or how many can no longer purchase a firearm because of a prior felony.

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    Poppies... (none / 0) (#1)
    by desertswine on Sun Nov 12, 2006 at 01:56:21 AM EST
    In Flanders' fields the poppies blow
    Between the crosses, row on row,
    That mark our place: and in the sky
    The larks, still bravely singing, fly
    Scarce heard amid the guns below.

    We are the dead. Short days ago
    We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
    Loved and were loved, and now we lie
    In Flanders' fields.

    Take up our quarrel with the foe;
    To you from failing hands we throw
    The torch; be yours to hold it high,
    If ye break faith with us who die
    We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
    In Flanders' Fields.

    John McCrae, 1915.

    some things never change (none / 0) (#2)
    by roger on Sun Nov 12, 2006 at 07:11:02 AM EST
    It's Johnny this, and Johnny that,
    and chuck him out, the lout
    but he's hero of his country when the guns begin to shoot


    i can empathize (none / 0) (#3)
    by freejeff on Sun Nov 12, 2006 at 11:48:36 PM EST
    we definitely dont take into account their service.... when judging their character.