The Latest: Judge still considering Trump motion by Bergdahl
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on the sentencing of Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl (all times local):
A military judge says he hasn’t decided yet on a motion by Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl that argues President Donald Trump’s comments have tainted the case.
Sentencing for Bergdahl on charges that he endangered comrades by walking off his post in Afghanistan resumed Wednesday morning.
The judge, Army Col. Jeffery Nance, said that he was still considering a motion by the defense to dismiss the case over Trump’s comments and would rule later.
Trump heavily criticized Bergdahl on the campaign trail and recently referred back to those comments during a news conference.
Also Wednesday, prosecutors began calling service members who were wounded searching for Bergdahl.
A former Navy SEAL teared up as he talked about a dog that helped them find enemy fighters who attacked them on that mission. Senior Chief Petty Officer James Hatch says spray from an enemy’s AK-47 killed a military dog named Remco and then wounded him.
Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl returns to a military courtroom at Fort Bragg Wednesday for his sentencing hearing, where prosecutors plan to present evidence that fellow service members were seriously wounded in a fruitless search for him after he abandoned his post in Afghanistan.
Prosecutors are expected to start calling witnesses to discuss these search missions and resulting injuries , which the judge ruled would not have happened had Bergdahl not endangered his comrades in 2009.
The 31-year-old soldier who spent five years as a Taliban prisoner faces up to life behind bars in the U.S. after pleading guilty to the rare charge of misbehavior before the enemy as well as desertion.
Criticism by President Donald Trump looms over the case. The military judge has yet to rule on defense arguments that Trump’s comments as recently as last week are preventing Bergdahl from getting a fair sentencing hearing.