Tim Hennis went to trial three times for raping a woman and murdering her and her children. In North Carolina state court he was convicted, then retried and acquitted. (Graphic photos in the first trial were deemed prejudicial, hence the second trial.)

     Twenty years after the crime and after discharge from an exemplary military career, Hennis was recalled to active military duty, tried in a military tribunal, convicted, and sentenced to death based on newly-acquired evidence of his DNA in the victim’s vagina.

     The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution says in pertinent part “No person shall be … subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb.” And a U.S. Supreme Court case has held that criminal trials for crimes committed during a tour of duty can only occur before the service term expires.

     Tim Hennis, whose case is on appeal, should walk free based on either or both of those legal precepts.