Court to review Okla. soldier's Iraq murder appeal

January 13, 2012 - 6:10 PM

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A military court has agreed to review an appeal for a new trial by an Oklahoma soldier convicted of murdering an unarmed Iraqi prison detainee after interrogating him at gunpoint.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces issued a ruling Friday saying it will examine 1st Lt. Michael Behenna's claims that his military trial wasn't fair because the judge gave the jury faulty instructions and prosecutors failed to disclose favorable information to the defense.

Behenna is serving a 15-year sentence at Fort Leavenworth, Kan., for his 2009 conviction for unpremeditated murder in a combat zone. He was initially sentenced to 25 years, but the term was reduced.

Vicki Behenna says her son likely hasn't heard about the ruling and she plans to tell him in person on Saturday.