Denver, CO Martial Law Blog

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Sexual Assaults in the Military Increased by Almost 38 Percent Last Year

According to a survey by the Pentagon, the number of sexual assaults reported by service members in 2018 spiked by almost 38 percent. Last year, approximately 20,500 cases of “unwanted sexual contact.” This includes rape, forcible sodomy, and groping in addition to other offenses. Although

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Sunday, July 14, 2019

Military Members and “Misbehavior Before the Enemy”

While the military is often known for following rules and maintaining order, that does not mean that all of its members are incapable of finding themselves legally in trouble. Those in the military must follow the Uniform Code of Military Justice, or UCMJ. The UCMJ contains various offenses with which a military member may be charged. One of the most complex offenses is known as “misbehavior before the enemy.” 

What Constitutes Misbehavior Before the Enemy?

Misbehavior before the enemy is a broad offense that encompasses several types of behavior, when conducted in the presence of enemy forces.

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Friday, June 28, 2019

Are Military Veterans Subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice if Their Alleged Crimes Are Committed After They Have Retired?

When individuals have retired from their service with the military there is often a sense of pride and a belief that they are now free from military laws, such as the Uniform Code of Military Justice (“UCMJ”), that they had previously been subject to. However, what many retired military members may not realize, is they are still subject to court-martial under the UCMJ instead of civilian courts – even if the alleged crimes were committed after they retired.

Recent Precedent

Two marines have recently filed separate petitions with the U.
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Friday, June 21, 2019

What is the General Court-Martial?

Those who serve in the military (the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard) are subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice and are to be tried via court martial.

There are three different levels of courts-martial. As far as military courts are concerned, while a summary court-martial is for minor offenses, the general court martial is the most serious.
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Wednesday, May 29, 2019

What Can I do if I’ve Received an Other Than Honorable Discharge?

You have worked hard to find yourself in a branch of the United States military. You have been willing to fight and even die for your country. You likely have sacrificed a lot in the process. When you have received an “Other Than Honorable” or “OTH” discharge from the military, it causes significant loss of benefits and may hinder your civilian life including employment and medical benefits going forward. So what are your options; what can you do?

Receiving VA Benefits After You Have Been Discharged

Generally speaking, in order to receive VA benefits and other services, a veteran must have been discharged under honorable conditions.
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Monday, May 13, 2019

You’ve Failed a Military Drug Test: Now What?

To ensure that all of our military members are in the best condition for fighting (not to mention for representing our country), each branch of the military employs a drug-testing program in the form of a urinalysis. This active testing helps to deter members of the military from engaging in any controlled substance activity. All told, the military tests a whopping 60,000 urine samples each month. 

What Might You Stand to Lose?

Those who test positive will generally receive great disciplinary or administrative action against them, including court-martial. Each branch of the military has a “zero tolerance” policy when it comes to drug use of its members.
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Friday, April 19, 2019

What are the minimum mandatory sentences for sexual assault convictions?

While it is obviously upsetting to be charged with any crime in the military, certain charges can be more frightening to face than others—like charges that subject a service member to dismissal or discharge or confinement. 

If you are facing charges of sexual assault in the military, it’s imperative that you have a skilled civilian court-martial defense attorney on your side. This is important because a conviction for sexual assault offenses carries a mandatory minimum sentence which, at the least, includes dismissal or dishonorable discharge.

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Thursday, April 11, 2019

Are military retirees subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice for crimes they allegedly committed after their retirement?

When it comes to the “long arm of the law” court-martial defense attorneys know that the length of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (“UCMJ”) reaches farther than many retired military members may realize. And as several retired military service members have learned the hard way, they are indeed still subject to court-martial under the UCMJ—not the civilian courts—even for crimes allegedly committed after they retired. 

Two Marines have recently separately petitioned the US Supreme Court unsuccessfully to have their cases appealed claiming that the Department of Defense does not have the authority to prosecute retired service members for non-military crimes committed after retirement and that their cases should be right in civilian court.

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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 Read more . . .

Monday, March 4, 2019

Is it still fraternization if the couple marries?

There are only approximately 24 women in the Marine Corps infantry. And soon there will be one less-- as soon as her expected administrative separation is complete. 

Recently, a former sergeant with a good record pleaded guilty to fraternization for having a relationship with a subordinate in her unit—a man who became her husband.
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Thursday, February 28, 2019

Can fraternal activities lead to court martial?

Whether a Nerf gun fight that triggered “active shooter and terrorist attack hysteria” on the same day had anything to do with it, another alleged incident at the Air Force Academy resulted in the first ever criminal hazing case in the Academy’s history. 

While hazing at the Academy was “officially banned” since it was founded in 1954, rituals that allegedly unfolded on the evening in question have reportedly been part of the Academy’s swim team’s tradition for many decades. 

Now, two senior cadets, who were barred from graduation, may need court-martial defense attorneys depending on the outcome of their preliminary hearings.
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