What to Know About Pre-Trial Restraint in the Military

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Gavel in a courtroom and scales in background.

When you have been accused of a crime, your file has been flagged, and you have been taken into custody before being released, you may feel scared and confused. It’s difficult to fully grasp what has transpired, let alone, what is going to happen moving forward. 

Under the military’s Rules for Courts-Martial (RCM), your commanding officer(s) have several options that they can pursue. It’s possible that you may not have any restrictions for the time being, although the likelier possibility is that you will be facing some type of pretrial restraint. After all, it is pretty common. 

What is Pre-trial Restraint?

Pre-trial restraint in the military includes any type of orders prohibiting what you are allowed to do as you await your trial. There are several different types of restraints, or limitations, that a military member may face. These may include:

  • Orders to avoid interacting with someone in particular;
  • Orders to report to a specific person on a periodic basis; and
  • Orders to avoid certain locations both on- and off-base.

If your commanding officer finds that these restraints are insufficient, you may be taken into pre-trial confinement. 

Article 92 of the UCMJ

Under Article 92 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), sexual assault cases generally generate a no-contact order in order to prohibit the accused from interacting with the accuser. It is extremely important for those who are accused of sexual assault and given no-contact orders to abide by them completely. If you fail to abide by a no-contact order, you can also be charged with a violation of Article 92 in addition to any pre-existing charges. 

No-contact orders will usually remain in place until the end of the trial when a verdict has been reached. If the military member is found to be guilty, the no-contact orders will usually remain in effect until sentencing when they are taken into custody.

Should you be hit with a no-contact order, be sure to follow it. You should also bring the order to your military defense attorney as it may not be lawful. Be sure to maintain detailed records of any interactions that you have with any authorities pertaining to this order and preserve all related documents for your attorney to look over. 

The Court-Martial Law Division of Aviso Law LLC Helps Military Members in Colorado Who Have Been Charged with a Crime

The U.S. Government has an interest in obtaining a conviction as soon as possible, as it does not wish to gain negative publicity about one of its service members. That is why it is so important to consult with a knowledgeable and experienced military attorney as soon as possible.

If you are a military service member and have been charged with a crime under the UCMJ, the Court-Martial Law Division of Aviso Law LLC can help. We proudly serve our military members, who sacrifice so much for our country. To learn more or to schedule a free consultation, contact us today!

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