PHD #426: Trying for Trials
Trying for Trials
Summary: Kincaid elaborates on the net to catch Piers Rene-Marie, and gets a rank bump for the good work!
Date: 28 Apr 2042 AE
Related Logs: Nailing Piers
Kincaid Madilyn Corrath 
Marine Offices - Deck 6 - Battlestar Cerberus
This office consists of desks for those under the CO, along with his desk toward the back of the room. The S1 and S2 have desks here and the place is neat as a pin, with everything in its place. At the front of the room, a Marine sits at a desk to meet people as they come in through the hatch.
Post-Holocaust Day: #426

Lance Corporal Kincaid wanted a meeting with the Major and the Lieutenant. Strike that. The Lieutenant Colonel and the Captain. For what? He said it was about a 'big break in a case.' And so it seems it is; when Kincaid enters Madilyn's office and comes to attention to report his arrival, he has this smug grin on his face, like a cat that ate a whole pet store's supply of canaries. "Sirs. Thank you for finding the time for me."

"Well, if I'm going to be stuck in this damn office all day, I might as well get some good news, hm?" Madilyn's reply is almost flippant in how casual it is, but she does set down her pen and close the open folder. The two chairs across from her at the desk are left out, maybe from the last two occupants who forgot to push them back in in their excitement. Either way, she motions for either of them to have a seat should they want; she's quite comfortable behind the desk and protected by her fort of folders.

Corrath has elected to stand off to one side of the chairs, apparently having decided that he's been sitting for too long. Arms are lifted, crossed over his chest and as Kincaid makes his way into the room, he's giving the man a slight nod of his head. For the moment, though, he says nothing.

With Corrath standing and Madilyn offering him a seat, Kincaid is at a bit of a loss for a moment. Does he sit? Does he stand? He looks between his boss and his boss's boss; he ultimately decides to stand. "I got a big break in the Langer case; the murder during the big attack in the midship stairwell. I've got strong proof that Piers, is, in fact, the killer." A pause. "But to make it stick, it comes with a catch." Hence, why he's here, apparently.

Madilyn had already intimated to Kincaid her desire for such a conviction to stick, no matter what it took. Call it a weak moment, if you will, but the need for order is a critical one. The civilians have to know that taking advantage of military upheaval is no time for them to commit murder. "What's the catch?" she says, wasting no time. There's always a catch, but if it means getting this man behind bars - or worse - then it's worth considering. At least, that's Madilyn's gut reaction, and it shows on her face and in the way she shifts in her seat to listen.

As Kincaid begins to speak, Corrath is simply giving another slight nod of his head, listening to the information before his right brow begins to arch upwards. Eyes flit to Madilyn as she voices one of his questions, but then his gaze returns to Kincaid to offer, "I always want to know how the proof that you've uncovered is tied to such a .. catch."

"Do you remember how I got that redhead from the attack on Dekker to turn over the doctor that did her abortion?" They may or they may not; the short version they may recall is that a waitress from the Elpis dining area instigated the attack on Magnus Dekker by revealing his past researching of AI to some very anti-AI folks. She instigated the attack because she was in debt to Piers for arranging for a grey-market abortion for her. "Well, I got that doctor to admit that he doctored the autopsy report on Langer to hide Rene-Marie's tracks. But the only way he'll testify to it is if Rene-Marie gets a civilian trial."

"This is sounding familiar, yes. I think we then began discussing the virtues of giving the civilians some sort of civilian trial system?" At which point Madilyn then made the statement that if it was a civvie trial, they'd have to ensure that the jurors weren't Rene-Marie's cronies. The reason that she has that little upturn at the end of her statement is that it is sort of a question; all these events are beginning to run together a bit.

A faint cluck of Corrath's tongue is offered against the roof of his mouth before he's nodding his head in agreement, "I've been sorting through the details of a Civilian Legal system for awhile, now. It's not just as simple as packaging something up and passing it off, though. Commander Pewter needs to authorize the Elpis to not be held under the Marital Law status that we're currently in. If he fails to do that, Civilian trials remain part of the S2's office. Secondly, there's needs to be adequate legal representation for both the prosecution and the defence."

"Yeah. That's right. We're back to that again. In the last case, we were talking about giving Rene-Marie a civilian trial for those who attacked Dekker. Now we're talking about a civilian trial for Piers himself. You know, hoist him on his own petard. Give him what he wanted and slam him with it." Kincaid looks between Corrath and Madilyn. "No doubt there'll be some difficulties, but we need to make this happen. For two reasons. One, because Kepner just destroyed any faith people had in military justice. And two, we need to nail Rene-Marie with this murder charge and I can't make it work any other way."

"That's going to take time, of course. And in the time it takes us to organize and implement a civilian justice system for the Elpis - a system which somehow would have to mesh with the idea of marines as a police force, unless you feel comfortable giving civilians the authority to do so? - Rene-Marie is going to find a way to rally his troops, as it were. He's going to do something to inspire or incite every civilian on that ship so that no matter who gets selected to serve on a jury, they'll all have reason to save his ass." Madilyn just sighs and leans back in her seat. "Same conclusion we reached last time. Damned if we do it, maybe damned if we don't."

"Oh, I'm not disputing that fact, Lance Corporal. I'm simpling pointing out the difficult of such things." Arms unclasp and Corrath's lifting one to run long his newly shaved head. "Colonel, my office can authorize a civilian trial and request that the Captain of the Elpis act as the Judge. Jurors can be picked from the civilian populace, but the lawyers are going to be somewhat more difficult. There's still the chance that people are going to whisper that the Military had their hands in it, but it's the best chance we're going to have at getting something in place, right away."

"Then why don't we do that? I mean, it doesn't need to be an exact replica of Colonial civilian justice. Hades, I defended Admiral Abbot at an honest-to-goodness court-martial, and I didn't have any formal legal training." Kincaid's eyes bounce from one officer to another. "I'm not saying we need this right away. I'm saying we need a commitment to it to try to get back some civilian trust in the military." A beat. "And we need to nail Piers. Take him out of the equation."

"We're in agreement on several - well, all - of the points, really. I guess if our only option is a civilian trial, we need to do it. I can only imagine the rumblings that the military is involved, given that the captain of the Elpis is retired fleet, and the lawyers will likely have to come from our JAG department." One hand is placed at the edge of her desk, and Madilyn starts to tap her fingers. "What's your read on it, Lance Corporal? If we give them a trial, hastily put-together as it may be, are we going to have a riot on our hands?"

Eyes flit over towards Madilyn and Corrath is giving a slight nod of his head, "That's the downside. They lawyers will most likely need to come from the JAG or from the Fleet, unless we can wrangle up some Civilians who have legal training." Now, he's looking back to Kincaid as Madilyn poses his question and so, the S2 simply falls quiet, waiting for his reply.

Kincaid shakes his head. "No, sir. Not a riot. If anything, people will like the idea that they'll get to participate in government for once. I've told the Gunnery Sargent this once and I'll say it to you guys. What Piers Rene-Marie feeds on is the feeling that civilians have that they are utterly powerless in their own lives and their own fates. Giving them a civilian trial will relieve some of that feeling, and all for the better."

"And if the jury selection manages to nab Rene-Marie sympathizers, and the conviction doesn't stick? That's my worry." Note, there's no discussion about whether or not he really might be innocent, since the evidence pretty well points to his guilt, but jurors are fickle like that. "We won't exactly have an appeals process…if the prosecution even can appeal on a not-guilty verdict. I'm no student of the law," Madilyn says, before turning to Corrath. "You're a guru on this, right?"

Giving a nod of agreement to the Lance Corporal's words, Corrath's then shifting his attention back in the direction of Madilyn, "It's a risk, there's no doubt about it. But that's always why the prosecution and the defence have a chance to vet through the jurors as best they can. If the conviction doesn't stick, though, we've at least shown that the military doesn't have our hand in the pie, trying to force a guilty verdict." Arms lift to cross back over his chest, now. "Unfortunately, the prosecution can't re-try him on the same crime, if he's found not guilty. We're going to be rolling our dice with this one, Colonel, but I think the Lance Coropral is right. We need to do it."

Kincaid looks between the two officers. Having gotten this going, he's going to step out of its way unless they have questions for him. He only adds: "If you go along with this, sirs, here's my plan: I promise Piers a civilian trial for the Dekker attackers. He gets me the Dekker attacker names. And then we nab both the Dekker attackers and Piers in one swoop and announce civilian trials for them both."

Madilyn thinks for a moment, and rubs her temples a bit. "I hate having to go onto Elpis, pull civilians out with marines, and throw them in our brig, even if it's only for a moment. However, I don't know of anywhere more secure to hold them. Long story short, how many marines are you going to need, roughly, to arrest them, transport them, or erect a temporary holding cell on Elpis if needed? If we're doing this, we need to move quickly…but after we arrange for council and the trial infrastructure."

Looking back to Kincaid, Corrath's giving a quick nod of his head, "Alright, Lance Corporal. Take whoever you need from Able and run with this." Now, he's looking towards Madilyn, offering the Colonel a quick nod, "We vetted the Elpis before hand. There are rooms that we are capable of using as temporary holding cells with Marine guards stationed at the entry ways." Then, he's looking back to Kincaid, "We're going to need to coordinate with JAG to get this organized and in place on the Elpis for a trial. We'll also need to reach out to the Captain of the Elpis, to ensure that he's willing to act as a Judge. I can take care of those two things, though."

"I'll try to use the security team that's already on Elpis for a regular shift to do crowd control, only bring over an additional small team to make the actual arrests. Try to keep them out of combat blacks if possible." Kincaid sighs, thinking the tactics of this all through. "We can make the arrests first, announce the trials next. These will be our 'test cases' to prove it works. That gives us some time to set up the infrastructure while still having these guys under lock and key. We'll do initial interrogations in the temporary holding room, move them over after it."

"Are there any places on Elpis at all suitable for use as any sort of courtroom? If we are going to push this civilian trial as that, we need to take measures to ensure things function as similarly to a civilian courtroom as humanly possible. I looked at the Elpis deck schematics long ago, but the specifics one again evade me." She takes a frustrated breath, so many generalities floating about her head but so few specifics!

"Agreed, Lance Corporal." That's all that Corrath has to offer before he's looking back towards Madilyn, shoulders lifting into the slightest of shrugs, "I can't recall, to be honest. I'll make sure a review of the Elpis is conducted and see if there is a room that we can make suitable use of."

Kincaid takes a deep breath and then nods. "All right. So I've got your approval to go ahead with this?" He makes a final confirmation. "But — in the end. We don't need to figure this all out. Let the civilians get involved. Let them be part of it. You'll be surprised at their ingenuity, what they can do when they feel empowered. They've got a lot of energy there; it just needs an outlet besides being allowed to sweep and do menial repairs."

"I'm not averse to getting them involved…just hesitant, given that we've so far been unable to ascertain the depth to which Rene-Marie's roots in the civilian population truly go. I have thought all along that they should be more involved with the operations of the fleet - operations, not planning or decisions regarding military procedure, mind you. We have background files on everyone on that ship, don't we? Let's make a short-list of any civilians we think could help in establishing any sort of civvie trial system. Paralegals, court clerks…anything." Madilyn's leaning back in her chair now, back to tapping the desk with both hands now.

Looking back to Kincaid, Corrath's giving the man a curt nod of his head, "You have the approval, Lance Corporal." Now, his gaze is playing between Madilyn and Kincaid, head bobbing once more, "We have files, but some of them are limited in nature, but we should be able to pull up some things." Now, he's looking back towards Kincaid, "I do recommend, Lance, that we involve a one Ms. Rose Ibbhanas. She's already put some work into the possibility of a Civilian Legal System as well as a civilian security force for the Elpis."

"I'll talk to her," says Kincaid, making note of the name. "I'll get this going. We'll have arrests as soon as I get the names of the Dekker attackers from Rene-Marie." A beat. "Anything else, sirs?"

"Actually, I have something else to discuss with you, Lance Corporal. Captain," Madilyn says while giving Corrath a knowing grin. "You're welcome to stay here for this, if you like. It's nothing that requires privacy." As she speaks, Madilyn turns back to her desk and starts to fiddle within one of the drawers, looking for something in particular.

"Keep us in the loop, Lance. I'll speak with JAG and make sure they'll have people available, should we need lawyers." Now, he's looking back to Madilyn, giving a slight shake of his head, "S'alright, Colonel. I'll be on my way. I need to go follow up on that request I sent through to you earlier in the week, anyways." Drawing himself to attention, he's giving the Colonel a quick salute before looking to Kincaid, "Good luck, Lance."

"Thank you, Captain. Congratulations." Kincaid gives a flash of a smile to Corrath. And then he turns front to Lieutenant Colonel. He's been so wrapped up in this case that he apparently doesn't have a sense of what's happening. "Sir?" he asks.

"Very well Captain. When you get more specific of such a transition, let me know. At this moment, I'm still debating losing a good officer. I know they need help down there, however, and it would be nice to have a marine liason of sorts…someone to speak 'jarhead' as it were." That's all directed at Corrath, of course, and she speaks as she talks to him. Then, turning to Kincaid, Madilyn finally retrieves from the desk drawer what it was she was looking for as Corrath slips out. "I think someone left these here. They have your name on them," she says, flipping a small box to Kincaid in a low, looping underhand arc.

Kincaid takes the box and opens it on up. "Well," he says finally. "A non-commissioned officer, huh, sir?" After all, it is the big leap between E-3 and E-4, from the mere enlisted to the NCO classes. "I guess I'm not as much of a frak up as Gunny thinks I am sometimes."

"If you keep snooping around and putting people behind bars the way you're lining up to do here shortly, we might have to start looking at E-5 and beyond." But wait, there's more! "That's not the only thing that someone had the audacity to leave in my desk with your name on it." There's another box in there too, more square in shape, and containing a Fleet Commendation Medal with the Valor device. "The Corporal bump is for dedicated and thorough policework as much as it is for putting your neck on the line on Areion. I know that not too long ago, you were a reporter yourself, and now you're fighting and bleeding alongside career marines. The medal is for that latter part, both earned. Congratulations, Corporal."

A long pause. And then a genuine smile. "Thank you, sir." Truly, Danny is touched. "Thank you." He takes both the pins and the medal off of the desk, pausing only to replace his Lance Corporal jewelry with some more appropriate for his station in life. He looks as if he's about to say something else, perhaps something snarky, but whatever it is, it dies on his lips. All he says is: "Is there anything else?"

"Well, if I had anything else for you in my desk, I certainly would present it to you!" Madilyn replies with a chuckle and a little grin. "No…no, there's nothing else. You've got some civilians to talk to and some plans to act on, I think?"

"I think I do, yes, sir." Kincaid nods and turns on his heel. "I'll keep you and the Captain posted, sir." And, with that, Corporal Daniel Kincaid is back on the prowl.

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