201611.18
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Rule 412 Should Apply to the Government

Military Rule of Evidence 412 is an exclusionary rule that places the sexual behaviors of an alleged victim of a sexual offense beyond the limits of relevancy.  Any evidence of the “sexual behavior” or “sexual predispositions” of an alleged victim is forbidden from being admitted in any proceeding.  The Rule does have three stated exceptions…

201610.25
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Inappropriate Relationship

The government typically charges a Soldier with entering into an inappropriate relationship when there was, in fact, no relationship.  The problem stems from a fundamental misunderstanding by the government as to what it required in order to actually enter into an inappropriate relationship under the regulation. The Army Court of Criminal Appeals has repeatedly held that…

201605.07
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Military Sexual Assault Convictions

The military received 6,083 reports of sexual assault last year.  Of those reported cases, 2,783 were sent to a military commander for disposition.  In a refreshing display of commander discretion, the convening authority decided that there was not enough evidence to pursue a sexual assault conviction in 770 cases.  Ultimately, 543 of the 2,783 cases went to court-martial. …

201604.29
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New Charges In Sexual Misconduct Case

The Washington Post is reporting that new criminal charges have been filed against Maj. Mark Thompson, a former U.S. Naval Academy instructor.  Major Thompson is being charged with making a false official statement and conduct unbecoming an officer. Asked in January of this year why he lied to authorities, Thompson described the immense pressue he…

201603.18
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AFCCA Affirms Guilty Plea For A False Sexual Assault Claim

A false sexual assault claim can ruin a Soldier’s life and career.  Unfortunately, many believe that false claims either don’t happen, or happen so rarely that it is not a concern.  These individuals typically ask “why would anyone put themselves through the judicial process by making a false sexual assault claim?”  For those that believe this,…

201603.14
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Spike in Sexual Assault Reports

The Washington Post recently published a very interesting article titled “Why sexual assault reports have spiked at the Naval Academy, West Point and the Air Force Academy.”  Each of the academies have seen an increased number of sexual assault reports in the most recent school year.  A Defense Department review pointed to a number of specific tactics…

201603.07
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A Fair Court Martial for SGT Bergdahl

Sergeant (SGT) Bowe Bergdahl’s defense counsel recently sent a letter to presidential contender Donald Trump requesting an opportunity to interview him.  The letter stated that the interview would be used to determine if a future deposition of Mr. Trump, or calling him as a witness for a pretrial hearing, would be necessary.  The basis for…

201603.05
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Digital Evidence and Your Court Martial Defense

In the typical case, your command escorts you to CID’s office for questioning.  Since you have spoken with a civilian defense attorney, you understand your rights and have no intention of answering any questions.  The CID agent reads you your rights on a DA Form 3881.  As instructed, you check the box that states you do…

201602.19
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Sexual Assault Crimes Under Article 120

The Judicial Proceedings Panel released a report on sexual assault crimes under Article 120. The following is the executive summary from the report. Article 120 is the statute used to prosecute sexual assault crimes under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). It has been substantially revised since the UCMJ was first adopted in 1951….