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Military Murder Defense Attorney

Types of Defense

Homicide and homicide-related charges such as manslaughter and attempted murder are as serious within the military as they are in civilian cases. Murder charges threaten the military member's future in the service as well as his or her freedom. If accused, the first priority should be the organization of an effective defense with the assistance of a skilled military law defense lawyer.

If you have been accused of homicide or another violent crime as a service member, considering contacting attorney Ryan Coward of the law firm of Elkus, Sisson & Rosenstein, P.C., in Denver. Mr. Coward’s qualifications and track record are, in a word, unmatched. They include:

  • Representation of hundreds of service members accused of crimes
  • Numerous successful military trial verdicts
  • Representation of Army Major Nidal Hasan, the individual convicted of the mass shooting at Fort Hood, Texas, in 2009.
  • Post trial representation of Army Staff Sergeant Robert Bales, the individual convicted of the mass murder of 16 Afghan civilians in 2013.

As counsel to Army Major Hasan, Mr. Coward served as a Capital Defense Attorney in the pretrial phases of MAJ Hasan’s death penalty case. Mr. Coward also litigated a number of high profile appeals in federal appellate courts relating to Major Hasan and was responsible for the litigation of all First Amendment, religious freedom, pretrial publicity, jury selection, and constitutional issues relating to the case. A highly recognized former military attorney, Mr. Coward now works in private practice.

Why Hire a Private Practice Military Attorney to Defend Against Military Criminal Charges?

When you are charged with a crime as a service member, you are assigned military defense counsel. This individual may be overworked and overwhelmed, and in either case is employed and appointed by the very organization that likely believes you to be guilty.

As an individual charged with a serious crime facing life-altering legal consequences, it makes sense to take charge of your defense by working with a highly qualified private practice attorney dedicated to your full defense. In addition to preparing the comprehensive investigation that will be essential in building your case and defending your rights, a private practice attorney can:

  • Determine whether your case is identified as Article 118 or can be mitigated to Article 119. Article 118 pertains to premeditated murder; Article 119 pertains to manslaughter, which may be committed following an emotional outburst of provocation. The distinction between Article 118 and Article 119 can make the difference between years and decades in jail.
  • Work to mitigate the legal consequences of a murder or manslaughter conviction based on factors such as post-traumatic stress disorder, service history, history of mental health conditions, combat history and substance abuse.
  • Fight for your rights in court. Few cases involving any criminal charge are litigated: instead, pre-trial negotiations are often employed as a device to secure reduced charges or sentencing. It’s important, however, for all parties involved to know that the defense considers trial to be an option, and that the defense attorney will be ready to employ experience, skill and aggression to pursue a not-guilty verdict if the case does go to trial.

Do not take chances with the outcome of your homicide case. Obtain the legal assistance you need following violent crime criminal charges in any branch of the military by contacting attorney Ryan Coward of Elkus, Sisson & Rosenstein, P.C., in Denver.


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