Tuesday, October 19, 1999

Front and Center - 90

Harm (H) received his second distinguished flying cross in a conference room ceremony and Chegwidden (C) had Mac (M) do the "honors" and kiss him to Brumby's (Brum) annoyance. H and Bud (B) were assigned to prosecute Marine private William Clawson who attempted to rape a city councilman's daughter at knife point until Cpl Keely Woods prevented it. Woods was stabbed in the fight. Colonel Hegsterrer advised that Woods was "uncomfortable with the limelight" and even refused to attend ceremonies to receive the Navy Marine Corps medal. After H and B talked to him, Woods went UA then they had to track him down. They found that the information given on enlistment papers were false. When Mattoni, defense, found out they had no witness he offered to "settle for 6 months confinement." Clawson flippantly said "I was just messing with her," H told him he was the "luckiest sailor in the navy" and to not be the "stupidest." B showed photos around the DC playgrounds and a boy named "Toops" ID'd him as Lamar Dunwoody who had killed his brother. H found Dunwoody's mother who said she hadn't seen him. Toop's gang started harassing his mother so Woods/Dunwoody came to find H. H backed him down saying that he really wanted to do what was right and took him to a basketball court where they played trying to "think it over." Woods admitted he was in the witness protection program for turning in a gang member who had killed a man at an ATM for $40. H bet his testifying against leaving him alone on a final shot. H fouled him and when Woods came at him in anger, H backed him down again about not acting like a gang member. He was shown missing his shot then testifying. Later he said goodbye to his mother still in his uniform.

Brum was still blatantly "on the make" for M. She bristled and denied it when H told her that Brum was "on her scent" telling him that he'd been gone 6 months and he was not on a "need to know basis" for her relationships. Brum came again to her apartment unannounced with food. She accepted but when he tried to kiss her she said "she wasn't ready yet." Later H apologized to her saying he should have believed her because "there was not chemistry between them." Brum volunteered to prosecute PO Richard Brendisi when M was assigned to defend him on possession of marijuana charges. M motioned for dismissal of charges because no field test had been done by the agent and all lab specimen's were mysteriously lost. The arrogant and capricious judge Sebring told M he "wasn't letting her out the back door." The agent testified he "knew it was marijuana" by the look and feel- "real good stuff" he said. His dog, Jingo, was old with cataracts and M wanted to "examine the witness." Brendisi said that the packet was Tropical Oregano that he was bringing back for his mothers restaurant. Jingo picked an oregano bag in court so Brendisi was acquitted. Later M found that Jingo had been decommissioned and she felt guilty so she "adopted" him.

Tuesday, October 12, 1999

The Return - 89

[Harm is back at JAG, but has lost the "fight for his client with the same tenacity he had as a naval aviator" as promised in the intro. The episode is about an emotionally abused child coping with continued abuse as an adult officer. And how easily, and insidiously, military justice can be perverted] Harm (H) returned to JAG he said it felt like he "had left yesterday and been gone 100 years." People didn't know him and he missed most of the office "inside" joking around. Chegwidden (C)feigned being offended when H expected to do "scut work" like Mac (M) was forced to do after she left then returned. "Do you think I would be so petty?" he asked as he assigned him a "good case" with a smirk- the SECNAVs son. Brumby (Brum) was in Hs old office and began baiting and pressing fights with H from the beginning. Lt. Brian Nelson was being court martialed for standing up to his arrogant vindictive CO Cdr Wallace Burke who was treating him like his father had done all his life. After a mistake at the helm, quickly corrected by Nelson, Seaman Rivera was unjustly and summarily sentenced to bread and water on the bridge. When Nelson pointed out lack of due process and refused to escort Rivera to the brig Burke relieved him of duties for court-martial. The SECNAV spoke with H and said "for the good of the Navy' it couldn't go to trial. He said he and Brian were alienated, having expected perfection from him during childhood to the point of taking him off his baseball team for not getting straight As. H got Burke to agree to drop charges if Nelson would "publicly admit he was wrong and apologize." Nelson said he had been subjected to verbal abuse, constant fault finding, rebukes in front of the crew and wouldn't accept the plea bargain. Brum maligned H in front of C for not making Nelson apologize to which H responded "as usual Cdr Brum has hit the nail squarely on his thumb." When Bud (B) asked why, Nelson said "why does any tyrant abuse his power- because he can!" B observed that his own father had also made him "feel like a looser." Gunny (G) found no official complaints about Burke but plenty of people who said he was "a hard ass" choosing one Jr. officer each cruise and "makes their life a living hell" until they break. When B began his standard defense to show that the order wasn't lawful Judge Sebring protected Burke with his rulings to the point of being similarly tyrannical to H. H told B to "back off" on their defense prompting M to ask him what was going on and say that she could advise C to have him removed from the case. The SECNAV came to Hs apartment and said that he had met Burke and told him to "see what his son had in him" and offered to testify. H didn't take that either and instead recalled Burke. H finally recalled Burke and while listing the points that showed lack of due process and judge Sebring stopped him. H was able to trip Burke into admitting he "intentionally provoked Nelson into disobeying your order for the sole purpose of punishing him later- making the order unlawful"; but, members found him guilty anyway. In the hallway Burke wanted an apology to reverse the charges but Nelson said "I would have made a good officer." Nelson told H "so he wins," and H responded "No, you loose."

H was told that Admiral Nash had nominated him for a second distinguished flying cross for pushing the F14 by its tail hook. M tried to begin socializing with H but he had other things to do. He called Jordan but she didn't return his calls until she came over and revealed she had orders for Spain. She said "maybe when I get back from Spain." C told him to change his uniform from that "line officer star" into the JAG Mill Rinde.

Tuesday, October 5, 1999

True Callings - 88

[Episode based on the Mar 10th, 1967 incident where USAF Capt Robert Pardo used his F4 Phantom to push a fellow aviator from North Vietnam into friendly territory.] Gunny Victor Galindez (G) arrived at JAG with everyone but Tiner and Bud's (B) blessings. Chegwidden (C) said he was having trouble obtaining two Limp Bizket tickets for a charity auction and G said he might be able to obtain them. Both B and Tiner decided to "one-up" G and get the tickets themselves. C enjoyed the competition. Tiner and B bid against each other on EBay until B won at $200. B kept telling G he couldn't sit at different desks until G said he'd sit on the floor thereby shaming him into letting him sit at Harriet's desk. Mac (M) told B that "Tiner was a child but you're not." G obtained the tickets "comp" from a roady friend- B got a donation receipt. M seemed very subdued; especially when C didn't acknowledge her efforts getting G to come to JAG.

Harm was flying missions aboard the Patrick Henry with Skates as his RIO. PO Sean Curran smuggled an endangered pregnant woman, Zepa Berisha, aboard his COD flight and onto the ship. She was pregnant through Serbian rape and in danger of death by her enraged fiancé. Lt Aldridge, the JAG, had never tried a criminal case but decided to start on this one. He adamantly refused Hs offers of help and botched badly until the last minute when he was loosing to the equally inept Lt Yuen. After the closing statements H came back from flying and showed that Yuen had charged Curran with non-applicable statutes. H was assigned to recon missions behind enemy lines. Skates developed panic attacks over the danger. H had a talk with her and revealed a week of feelings of impending death- "back in the days when I still thought that they would name an airfield after me." He said that he only knew "if you keep flying it does go away." Hs wingman was hit by flack which destroyed one engine and they were going down. H wouldn't let him eject in enemy territory when "feet wet" was so close. Tuna told him to "leave and let them eject in peace" but H had them lower their landing hook then pushed them with their hook on his canopy. He told Skates to keep them above 500 feet going over a ridge but gave her the call. She overcame her fear and let them get to 350 feet but they succeeded until they were "clear for nylon descent." Skates said if she "could get through flying with H she could get through anything." The pilots told H he was too young to be called "pappy" and gave him the new call sign of "Hammer" like his dad. Capt Pike had several "fatherly" talks with H and advised him that he had "nothing further to prove" and that he'd "miss him." H "had no career" flying because he'd "missed a couple of wars" and "those numbnuts will get a command before you do."