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“ON-AIR” PLEA FOR FAIR TRIAL
MILITARYCORRUPTION.COM EDITOR
URGES SEN. SUSAN COLLINS OF MAINE
TO GET INVOLVED – IF SHE DOES, WILL
JERRY TILTON GET “JUSTICE” AT LAST?


In an unprecedented plea over a network of Maine radio stations, MAJ Glenn MacDonald, USAR (Ret), editor-in-chief of MilitaryCorruption.com, urged Sen. Susan Collins to help obtain “justice” for one of her military constituents.

Former Staff Sergeant Jerry Tilton, a career Air Force NCO, was convicted of “molesting” one of his sons in a court-martial proceeding which featured “coaching” witnesses to change testimony and a rush to judgment “conviction” – that usually typifies such proceedings.

MacDonald made his plea to Maine’s junior senator – up for reelection this year – live “on the air” while a guest on the popular Maine in the Morning program aired over WVOM in Bangor and a number of affiliated stations across Maine.

“It’s the first time I can recall anything like it,” said the highly-respected Norman Gallant of Augusta, former executive secretary of the Maine Association of Broadcasters. “Such a heart-felt, straight-forward plea for justice should elicit some kind of response from Sen. Collins.”

Mrs. Jane Hellegers of North Whitefield, Maine told MilitaryCorruption.com she hoped that Sen. Collins would contact Air Force officials and see if indeed Tilton got a fair trial. “That’s the least she could do,” said Hellegers, a faithful listener to Maine in the Morning, hosted by the dynamic duo of Eric Leimbach and Mike Violette.

That sentiment was shared by many of our readers in Maine – most whom will be voting in the November general election. Collins is facing a tough fight from Democratic candidate Chellie Pingree, a former state senator from North Haven, Maine.

“Most of the time politicians don’t want to get involved in military cases because they don’t understand how the so-called Uniform Code of Military Justice works; and secondly, because there is little political upside to it,” Philip Dec of Monmouth, Maine told MilitaryCorruption.com.

“I will be curious to see if Sen. Collins will use her office to investigate the injustice suffered by Jerry Tilton,” he said. "I certainly hope so. My vote, in great measure, will be decided on whether or not she bothers to help one of her constituents obtain a new and fair trial.”

Similar sentiments were expressed by dozens of other Pine Tree State voters who contacted MilitaryCorruption.com. The question is: can Sen. Collins afford to “ignore” this case, or will she show once again, as she has in the past, how “effective” she can be at “going to bat” for a constituent who has been wronged?

The Tilton family has made all relevant documents in the matter available to the senator, including the eloquent written appeal now pending before the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.

Since only a tiny fraction of appeals – perhaps five per cent – are reviewed, and Tilton faces 15 more years imprisonment – he was sentenced to 18 years at the Leavenworth Disciplinary Barracks in 1999 – it is imperative that the former Air Force NCO get a new and fair trial.

This is a complicated case, one that MilitaryCorruption.com would not involve itself with unless we were convinced Tilton was innocent and the victim of a cruel injustice. Therefore, we reproduce below, from the transcript of the Maine in the Morning broadcast of August 7, 2002, the cogent remarks by MAJ Glenn MacDonald.

Sergeant Jerry Tilton of Windham, Maine was a non-commissioned officer in the U.S. Air Force for 14 years. Prior to that he served with honor four more years in the Air Force Reserve. He had a clean record with several commendations.

Right now, as I speak to you, SGT Tilton is in a jail cell at the military prison in Leavenworth, Kansas. He has already served three years of an 18-year sentence.

He was convicted, at court-martial, after his vindictive ex-wife accused him of “molesting” his youngest son, aged 9 years old.

We at MilitaryCorruption.com were contacted by SGT Tilton’s mother, Nancy, and sister, Janice, back in Maine. They told us Jerry had been “framed” and his trial was a “travesty of justice.”

After an exhaustive study of trial records, documents, a written appeal and interviews with family members, this website – MilitaryCorruption.com – is convinced Tilton is an innocent man.

For example, in the Article 32 preliminary hearing to determine if charges warrant court-martial, Tilton’s 10 year-old son admitted he’d LIED to investigators about his father’s alleged “abuse” of his brother. This little boy, by the way, had been interrogated by military police until 1 a.m. in the morning!

In any civilian court, such an admission would have resulted in the case being tossed out. But not in this military “kangaroo” court.

Then, SGT Tilton’s youngest son ALSO frustrated prosecutors when the boy repeatedly denied his dad had harmed him in any way. And the youngster stuck to that testimony despite every “word trick” the lawyers tried to get the boy to say what they wanted.

Only when a recess was called at the court-martial and the boy taken into a room with his mother and prosecution attorneys, did he change his story. When the youngster returned to the witness stand, he spoke hesitatingly, fearfully glancing at his “coaches” as he repeated like a mantra what he’d been told to say.

We at MilitaryCorruption.com contend the real “child-abuse” in this case took place in that courtroom and what SGT. Tilton’s sons went through, was the real “crime.”

Eric, we’re very familiar with the “show-trial” atmosphere and gross lack of Constitutional protections that routinely occur at military court martial. Our listeners here in Maine would be shocked to know that 95 – to – 98% of all service-members charged, end up “convicted,” in a system where the so-called “defense attorney” is appointed by the same commander seeking a “guilty” verdict.

Sen. Susan Collins is running for reelection this year. And we wish her well.

We hope the senator – unlike other “politicians” who “brush off” pleas for help from service members with impersonal “form letters” and a brick wall of “bureaucratic staffers,” will personally get involved in this case.
We know you’ve done that in the past, senator. You have the power to ensure justice is done. Jerry Tilton was born and raised in Maine. His mother and sister are your constituents, and they have a right to expect you to help. And that’s what we at MilitaryCorruption.com are asking you to do right now.

Senator, I’m speaking to you, personally – with thousands of voters “listening in” – I’m pleading with you, as a native “State-of-Mainer,” Vietnam veteran, and investigative journalist – PLEASE, I urge you to use your influence to correct this terrible injustice.

We’re not asking for SGT Tilton to be released, or the Air Force reprimanded for prosecutorial misconduct.
All we ask is that you contact the secretary of the Air Force and impress upon him that a new trial, one free of “coercion” and “open” to the Maine news media, be held.

If SGT Tilton is still found guilty, so be it. But if it’s found that he was “railroaded,” that his rights were violated, we invite you to join us at MilitaryCorruption.com in calling for Congressional hearings to reform and overhaul the half-century old, “Uniform Code of Military Justice.”



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