AP NewsBreak: Marine murder conviction overturned

Associated Press

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The military's highest court has overturned a murder conviction against a Camp Pendleton Marine in one of the most significant cases against American troops from the Iraq war.

The Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces on Wednesday threw out the conviction of Sgt. Lawrence Hutchins III.

According to the ruling posted on the court's website, the judges agreed with Hutchins, who claimed his constitutional rights were violated when he was held in solitary confinement without access to a lawyer for seven days during his interrogation.

Hutchins led an eight-man squad accused of kidnapping a retired Iraqi policeman from his home in April 2006, marching him to a ditch and shooting him to death in Hamdania.

The squad's other members served less than 18 months.

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