What are the latest developments in the capital murder case against Senior Airman Charles Amos Wilson, III?
In the U.S. Air Force’s only pending capital murder case, Senior Airman Charles Amos Wilson, III is facing a slew of charges following the unthinkable murder of his fiancé, their unborn child, and a former friend in an unrelated 2011 incident. At the current stage of the case – which involves the argument of several motions relating to the facts present at the time of the killings – attorneys for Wilson are strenuously objecting to the introduction of a number of aggravating factors, which could result in an elimination of a possible death penalty, if granted.
Chief Trial Judge of the Air Force Col. Vance H. Spath has agreed to dismiss three of the 17 charges originally filed against Wilson, including two charges of threatening communication and one charge of unlawfully discharging a firearm. Nonetheless, Wilson continues to face charges of murder, aggravated arson, conspiracy, assault, obstruction of justice, and burning with intent to defraud.
Beginning in 2011, Wilson is alleged to have intentionally set fire to a home he shared with a civilian employee at Robins Air Force base, located in Georgia. The incident, which was originally calculated to result in the receipt of insurance proceeds, caused the death of the roommate. Wilson is facing a felony murder charge in connection with this incident.
In 2013, Wilson is alleged to have shot his pregnant finance, who was 8 ½ months pregnant with their child – who also perished. The woman was discovered in her home, approximately 100 miles away.
Attorneys for Wilson have argued against the introduction of several aggravating factors, including the death of the unborn child – which counsel asserts is not a “person” under the military’s statutory definition. Counsel has also argued that there was no actual conspiracy between him and his roommate to burn down the house, which would then negate the felony murder charge. Col. Spath has denied the request to dismiss the conspiracy charge, and has yet to rule on the issue surrounding the unborn child.
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