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Timothy B. Hennis - US Military Death Row - Page 4
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Thread: Timothy B. Hennis - US Military Death Row

  1. #31
    Senior Member Member DStafford's Avatar
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    Sep 2012
    What they should have done was just tried him for one murder. Then, if that didn't go as planned, they still had 2 more murders they could have tried him on.
    Last edited by DStafford; 10-10-2012 at 12:24 AM. Reason: Typo...

  2. #32
    Administrator Moh's Avatar
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    Oct 2010
    Timothy Hennis appeals murder convictions; former Fort Bragg soldier argues Army lacked jurisdiction

    By Drew Brooks
    The Fayetteville Observer

    A former Fort Bragg soldier convicted of a 1985 triple murder a quarter century after the crimes took place has again appealed his conviction to a military court.

    Hennis, a former master sergeant, was brought out of retirement to face an Army court-martial nearly two decades after a 1986 conviction in state court was overthrown and he was found not guilty in 1989.

    Lawyers for Hennis, who is being held at the U.S. Army Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., filed a petition for extraordinary relief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces on Jan. 27, according to the court's daily journal.

    His lawyers argue that the military lacked the jurisdiction to court-martial Hennis because of an alleged break in his military service that occurred while he was awaiting an appeal in North Carolina courts, according to a copy of the petition.

    Hennis repeatedly made the argument before, during and after his court-martial on Fort Bragg in 2010.

    In 2012, the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review Hennis' arguments. Other civilian federal courts have ruled that it would be inappropriate to consider jurisdiction during Hennis' military appeals.

    Hennis has maintained his innocence, but the latest petition only deals with the issue of jurisdiction.

    The petition is the ninth time Hennis has made the argument that the military lacked jurisdiction. It asks that the military appeals court set aside the conviction and sentence and order Hennis' immediate release.

    Eastburn and her children were found stabbed to death in their home in the Summerhill neighborhood in May 1985. A third child, 22-month-old Jana, was found alive in the home.

    At the time of the killings, Gary Eastburn, Kathryn's husband and father to the three girls, was in the Air Force and training in Alabama.

    Over the years, the case has repeatedly attracted national media attention, including several television specials and a book and television miniseries, both named "Innocent Victims" in the mid-1990s.

    Part of the appeal is the unique nature of the case, which has been tried three times in three different courtrooms.

    Hennis was originally convicted of the murders in Cumberland County Superior Court in 1986, but he was acquitted in Wilmington in 1989 after winning a new trial on appeal.

    Hennis was then released and continued his military career. The Army brought him out of retirement and charged him in the killings after DNA from the crime scene was linked to him in 2006.

    In addition to his death sentence, Hennis was demoted to E-1 and forced to forfeit all pay and allowances and receive a dishonorable discharge.

    He is now one of several military prisoners on death row at Fort Leavenworth, and his appeals could take years.

    Even following appeals, Hennis' sentence would not be carried out without presidential approval.

    The United States has not executed a member of the military since 1961, and only one inmate at Fort Leavenworth's U.S. Disciplinary Barracks has been approved for execution.

    That inmate, Ronald Gray, is another former Fort Bragg soldier who was convicted of numerous rapes and murders in the 1980s. His execution is on hold while on appeal in federal court.


  3. #33
    Administrator Heidi's Avatar
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    Oct 2010

    Timothy Hennis with his daughter, Kristina, 4, and wife Angela depart the courthouse in Wilmington, NC after he was found not guilty in 1989.

    Death Row Stories (10pm, CNN) - Tonight’s installment features the case of Timothy Hennis, an Army sergeant stationed at Fort Bragg who was found guilty of the murders of his wife and two children, but later appealed his conviction in light of new evidence.

    An uninformed opponent is a dangerous opponent.

    "Y'all be makin shit up" ~ Markeith Loyd

  4. #34
    Senior Member Frequent Poster elsie's Avatar
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    Oct 2012
    North Carolina
    Thanks for posting this, I will definately watch it. To think the jury got it right the first time

    I have watched doc on this case and read a lot on it. That his lawyers claim she had willing sex with Hennis makes me sick.
    Proverbs 21:15 "When justice is done, it is a joy to the righteous but terror to evil doers."

  5. #35
    Senior Member CnCP Addict Richard86's Avatar
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    Mar 2014
    Wiltshire, England
    Quote Originally Posted by elsie View Post
    I have watched doc on this case and read a lot on it. That his lawyers claim she had willing sex with Hennis makes me sick.
    Same as Rodney Reed.

    I've even read the same claim made about Roger Keith Coleman! Albeit online by no one who wanted to put their name to the claim, in a last hold out of the "he was innocent" campaigners who flocked to support his case, most of who have since quietly abandoned it.

  6. #36
    Senior Member CnCP Legend Mike's Avatar
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    Jun 2015
    Timothy Hennis' death sentence fits his gruesome crimes, court rules

    An Army appeals court has upheld the death sentence of Timothy Hennis, a former Fort Bragg soldier who in 1985 butchered a mother and two of her young children.

    A four-judge panel in the Army Court of Criminal Appeals filed an opinion last month after a review of 49 possible errors in Hennis' 2010 court-martial, which was the third time he stood trial in the case.

    The court found that Hennis' claims of double jeopardy were without merit, as was his claim that the Army did not have jurisdiction in the Fayetteville murders.

    "We conclude the approved sentence is correct in law and fact," the court opinion said. "Further, under the circumstances of this case, including appellant's rape of one of the murder victims, the vulnerability inherent in the young ages of the other two murder victims, and appellant's mutilation of all three murder victims, we conclude the adjudged and approved death sentence fits the crimes of which he was found guilty."

    Hennis, a master sergeant before a military judge stripped him of his rank and sentenced him to death, is in the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

    He was famously tried three times on charges that he killed Kathryn Eastburn and two of her daughters - Kara, 5, and Erin, 3 - at their Summerhill Road home off Yadkin Road. A third child, 22-month-old Jana, was found alive.

    The Army Court of Criminal Appeals review is a standard part of that process. Hennis can now seek relief in a higher military court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, before ultimately seeking relief with the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Since being recharged for the crimes in 2006, Hennis has claimed the Army lacked jurisdiction in at least 11 petitions to the Army Court of Criminal Appeals, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, U.S. District Court for North Carolina, 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and U.S. Supreme Court.

    Each petition has been denied.

    We all live in a clown world.

  7. #37
    Senior Member Frequent Poster joe_con's Avatar
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    Jul 2014
    I just watched that Death Row Stories episode. I feel that the military judge kept out a lot of evidence that could have given the jury reasonable doubt. There was DNA evidence from another male found under the fingernails of the victims that was left untested. Obviously Timothy Hennis will never be executed, which in the this case could be a good thing because there are reasonable doubts to his guilt. I might be understanding that portion of the episode wrong so if anyone knows more of the story please share. If people believe he is guilty just because they don't believe the wife had consensual sex with him seems like a poor reason to find him guilty, especially given the other untested DNA evidence.

  8. #38
    Administrator Helen's Avatar
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    Jan 2013
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    Soldier on death row will ask the militarys highest court to overturn his conviction

    By Nancy Montgomery
    Stars and Stripes

    A master sergeant sentenced by a civilian court to death for three murders, acquitted in an appeal and then sent back to death row decades later for the same crimes by a military court, will argue Tuesday that he should be a free man again.

    Lawyers for Timothy Hennis will argue in a hearing at the nations highest military court that Hennis shouldnt have been court-martialed for the murders in the first place.

    The legality of this case strains at every seam: in its jurisdiction, in its merits and procedure, in the fairness of its panel and in the conduct of the government, defense lawyers wrote in a brief to the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.

    Hennis lawyers argue that constitutional double jeopardy prohibitions should have precluded him from being tried again after his acquittal. A Supreme Court decision in June ruled that state and federal courts, which include military courts, can try the same crimes. However, the defense maintains that the Army was acting as a front for the state court.

    They will also argue that the Army lacked jurisdiction to court-martial Hennis in part because he was retired and hed had a break in service, and that Hennis should have been provided more defense resources.

    As a sergeant stationed at Fort Bragg, Hennis was convicted in a Cumberland County, N.C., courtroom in 1986 for the murders of Kathryn Eastburn, the wife of an Air Force captain who was away on temporary duty, and her 3- and 5-year-old daughters, Kara and Erin.

    All had been stabbed to death and Kathryn had been raped. A third daughter was found alive in her crib several days later by police.

    Three years after the conviction, the North Carolina Supreme Court awarded Hennis a retrial, ruling that gruesome crime scene photos may have unduly influenced the jury in 1986.

    At the retrial, the defense discredited prosecution witnesses, introduced new witnesses and raised doubt over physical evidence, including shoe imprints and a speck of blood on a towel that matched neither the Eastburns nor Hennis.

    He was acquitted, freed and went back to the Army, deploying to Saudi Arabia and Somalia before retiring in 2004.

    In 2005, two sperm samples taken from Katie Eastburns body were sent for DNA testing, which had become far more sophisticated and precise in the nearly two decades since the crime was committed. The DNA profile belonged to Hennis.

    Because double-jeopardy provisions prohibited North Carolina from prosecuting Hennis again, the Army stepped in, recalling Hennis to duty and court-martialing him on murder charges. The statute of limitations had run out on the rape charge.

    He was convicted of the murders and sentenced to death in 2010 by a Fort Bragg court-martial panel.

    There are few, if any, other cases in which someone is sent to death row, then acquitted, then sent to death row again, said Robert Dunham, executive director of the Death Penalty Information Center.

    But more than a dozen military death sentences in the past three decades have been overturned on appeal and changed to life in prison, he added. Hennis is one of just four men remaining on the militarys death row.

    Statistically, the most likely outcome of a military death sentence once its imposed is it will be overturned, Dunham said.

    "I realize this may sound harsh, but as a father and former lawman, I really don't care if it's by lethal injection, by the electric chair, firing squad, hanging, the guillotine or being fed to the lions."
    - Oklahoma Rep. Mike Christian

    "There are some people who just do not deserve to live,"
    - Rev. Richard Hawke

    "Men have called me mad; but the question is not yet settled, whether madness is or is not the loftiest intelligence"
    - Edgar Allan Poe

  9. #39
    Senior Member Member Mastro Titta's Avatar
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    May 2018
    Prato, Italy
    On February 28th, the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces UPHELD Hennis' conviction and death sentence.

    Last edited by Mastro Titta; 03-04-2020 at 05:49 PM.

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