The military has seen a sharp spike in sexual assault prosecutions over the years. Many of these are he said/she said cases, which arise after a night of heavy drinking. Some involve minors. But all of them are being much more aggressively prosecuted than previously. Congress has gotten involved, and there has even been a movie which alleges that the military is less active in prosecuting sexual assault allegations. I have found the opposite to be true.In many cases the military prosecutes cases that the civilian courts won't prosecute because of a lack of evidence and a lack of resources.But in an attempt to appear "tough on crime" the military still prosecutes them. I recently had a case where the state wouldn't touch it, because the alleged victim literally said she was not raped.But that didn't stop the military from prosecuting it.By aggressively representing our client, we got the charges dismissed after the Article 32 (b) Investigation.
Unlike their civilian counterparts, the military has seemingly unlimited resources available to them to prosecute sexual assault allegations. It is not uncommon for the military to have 4 or 5 prosecutors or investigators working on a case, while you have only your assigned military defense counsel.That counsel frequently has numerous other responsibilities to deal with.As a result, they are frequently overworked and overmatched.The prosecutors will stop at nothing to make sure you go to jail for the longest time possible and get kicked out of the military. They will employ numerous experts and investigators at government expense.You have to rely on your defense team or hire an independent investigator.And if you request an expert at government expense, the prosecutor and Staff Judge Advocate almost always recommend that the Convening Authority disapprove that request, or accept some lesser alternative. Then you have to petition the Military Judge to force the government to pay for your expert.
I have handled numerous complex sexual assault allegations. I have expert witnesses I have used in the past and been successful in getting the government to pay for. But having done several of these cases, I speak the language of the government's experts.So even without an expert we are ready to go to trial.If you are accused of sexual assault in the military you need an experienced military defense counsel. Don't trust your freedom to somebody who only dabbles in military law.
I am also seen a sharp increase in Internet related crimes, such as child pornography and solicitation of a minor. I have also represented service members charged with "cyber hacking."This is one area where you may be better off having your case heard at court-martial then in the civilian courts. A conviction at court-martial for almost any sexually based offense, or for any Internet sex offense is almost a guaranteed loss of a career, and all retirement benefits –sex offender registration is mandatory for these offenses upon conviction.You need the best team at your side.
The government has an array of "forensic computer experts" available to them. We have worked with several of the best computer experts in the country and can usually force the government to pay for their services. Regrettably, in many of the Internet sex crime cases, the evidence may be overwhelming, and frequently includes a full "confession" of the accused. Once again, that is why it is important to speak to a military lawyer before making any statements. In those cases where there is a confession, we can still help. It is extremely important that the attorney representing the accused be skilled in not only evaluating the case, but also in pre-trial negotiations in an effort to secure reduced charges, sentence protection and a lenient sentence at trial.
Military personnel who are charged with or under investigation for Internet sex crimes or sexual assault need the immediate advice and representation of an attorney experienced in defending Internet sex offenses in the military. Military personnel who have already been convicted at court-martial for a sexual assault or Internet crime need an attorney experienced in court-martial appeals. A conviction for these offenses can not only lead to the loss of your career and significant confinement, but also require you to be registered as a sex offender under federal and state sex offender registration laws. I have been handling these cases for over 20 years. Contact me for a free consultation.