Judge Allows Hearing On Evidence For Soldier Charged With Murder

A soldier accused of killing two superior officers in Iraq has won a new hearing to investigate the charges. But the military judge says it can only be held for a limited purpose.

Alberto Martinez is a National Guard staff sergeant from a unit in New York state. He's facing military justice at Fort Bragg on charges that he set off a mine to kill his commanders.

On Friday, A judge gave permission for a new hearing on the question of extenuating and mitigating evidence, and said Martinez' lawyers may try to prove that he's mentally retarded. If he is, he would avoid execution if he's convicted. No trial date has been set.

The case is being handled at Fort Bragg because its now-retired general was in charge of ground forces in Iraq when the officers were killed.