DNA report angers marine’s lawyer

Kyodo

A lawyer for a U.S. Marine Corps officer accused of attempting to rape a woman in Okinawa Prefecture in November protested on Monday media reports linking the DNA of the officer to saliva samples found on the woman’s body.

Michael Griffith sent a letter of protest to Justice Minister Mayumi Moriyama, saying there was no such analysis on the DNA of Maj. Michael Brown, 40, in the prosecutors’ list of evidence.

The letter accuses police of trying to create negative sentiment about Brown among the public and the judges by releasing the untrue information about him Thursday, the day of the first trial session.

Griffith also questioned the existence of the evidence, saying if the DNA analysis result really exists, prosecutors should first submit it as evidence.

But Junichi Okumura, a prosecutor at the Naha District Public Prosecutor’s Office, said, “Here in Japan, there is no problem if evidence is submitted later, unlike in the United States.”

Brown was indicted Dec. 19 for the attempted rape of the woman in her car Nov. 2 in Gushikawa, Okinawa Prefecture, where he is based at Camp Courtney.

Brown admits he was with the woman but denies the charges. He said she asked him to have sex with her but filed a criminal complaint after he refused.

Brown’s lawyer had urged that the trial be moved to the U.S.