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Denver, CO Martial Law Blog

Monday, March 11, 2019

Can a service member suspected of an alleged crime be held in pretrial confinement?

Just as it is in the civilian justice system, being charged with homicide in military court is a serious and frightening experience with potentially severe penalties if convicted. The servicemember’ career, benefits, freedom, and life could be on the line. 

Hiring a skilled civilian military defense attorney with the trial experience, time, and access to resources needed to mount an aggressive defense is critical in such a case. Alternatively, you can roll the dice with the free court-appointed defense counsel who is likely overworked and unmatched in trial experience when compared to the prosecuting legal team… not to mention employed by the government agency that likely believes you are guilty as charged.

In addition, those charged in high profile cases need experienced civilian defense attorneys that not only have military defense experience but also the finesse required to handle the public relations aspects of the situation in the media frenzy that follows the case.

A highly-decorated Navy SEAL, only a year from retirement, was placed into pretrial confinement in September and is reportedly facing “charges of premeditated murder and aggravated assaults– the later for allegedly shooting people and Iraq”, according to his attorney who claimed the people shot were combatants. The former charge stems from accusations that he allegedly “used a knife to execute a wounded ISIS fighter”, allegedly stabbing him “in the body and neck until he died” and thereafter allegedly “posed for a photograph next to the body”. He’s also reportedly facing “three obstructing justice specifications” for allegedly discouraging platoon members from reporting his alleged actions in an attempt to cover-up the alleged war crimes.

Reportedly, there are gag orders and much secrecy surrounding this officer, and another SEAL reportedly accused of helping cover up the first SEAL’s alleged “string of war crimes”. There are rumors swirling that the ongoing Naval Criminal Investigation Service probe “targets more than a dozen SEALS... plus the senior enlisted and commissioned leaders in Naval Special Warfare Group 1”. 

If you are, or believe you might be, facing a military court-martial or are charged with any misconduct, the military defense experts at Elkus, Sisson & Rosenstein, PC can help you. Contact us today for a free consultation. 
From our offices in Colorado Springs and Denver, Colorado, we represent service members of all ranks, in all branches, anywhere in the world. 


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