FORT HOOD, Texas -- The Court of Appeal for the Armed Forces stayed all proceedings in the Maj. Nidal M. Hasan court-martial to resolve whether Hasan can be compelled to be clean shaven for court proceedings.
An unshorn beard violates Army regulations. Colonel Gregory Gross, the court martial judge, has previously held Hasan's beard disrupts the court's proceedings and ruled Hasan in contempt of court on five different occasions.
At the time of the stay, the court had scheduled for Hasan to enter pleas. The prosecutors and defense also were to litigate remaining issues before they were to start panel selection Aug. 20. Whenever the CAAF lifts the stay, Gross will reschedule these matters.
The CAAF had previously rejected a defense appeal that Gross should have disqualified himself because of an alleged bias against Hasan.
In other matters, the federal district court in Waco, Texas, ruled this week that no evidence will be suppressed in the Hasan court-martial pursuant to 50 United States Code Section 1806. This federal statute deals with classified evidence collection measures.
Defense counsel for Hasan has also appealed Gross's denial of their request for a further continuance until Oct. 9 to the Army Court of Criminal Appeals. That court has yet to rule on the appeal.
The accused is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.