Two Enlisted Members’ Sexual Assault Cases Dropped
Recently, two enlisted military members defended by attorney Richard V. Stevens (Military Defense Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens, P.C.) had the sexual assault cases they faced dropped by the military before court-martial charges were preferred against them (UCMJ Article 120).
The first military client was a non-commissioned officer who was accused of sexual assault by another military member who had a casual dating relationship with the accused military member. As happens more and more frequently in military cases, the text messages they sent to each other told the real story, and led to the case being dropped. As reflected in the text messages, the sexual interactions between the two were completely consensual, but the complainant wanted a more serious relationship, and the accused only wanted to remain casual. In the complainant’s anger and vindictiveness, she claimed the accused had sexually assaulted her, but the text messages made clear that wasn’t the case. Ultimately, the military dropped the case before preferring court-martial charges against the accused military member.
The second military client was a junior enlisted member who was accused of sexual assault by a military superior. Again, the text messages they sent to each other told the real story, and led to the case being dropped and the complainant facing investigation. In this case, the complainant abused her position as superior to the accused and was in a prohibited romantic relationship with him. When questions started arising about the complainant’s behavior toward the accused, she falsely claimed sexual assault. She did not admit to having any type of personal relationship with the accused, and she was likely counting on him not revealing their consensual relationship to shield himself from possible disciplinary action. She was wrong. The text messages and other corroborating evidence were revealed to military investigators, and the case against the accused was dropped, and a disciplinary investigation was begun against the complainant.
Had there been court-martial trials and sex crime convictions in these cases, the clients could have been sentenced to a punitive discharge, a lengthy term of confinement in prison and, in addition, they would have been required to register as sex offenders. When false allegations are made, they put innocent people in very serious jeopardy. Their lives and futures could be forever altered. Thankfully, the cases were dropped and these two clients were spared this risk of devastation to their futures.
While these military sexual assault cases were successfully defended, and never reached court-martial, it is important to understand that every case has different facts, and success in previous cases does not guarantee success in any particular future case. No military lawyer or civilian defense lawyer, including those who specialize in military law, can guarantee the outcome of any military trial or case.
For more information about the military justice system, particularly cases alleging rape and/or sexual assault in violation of UCMJ Article 120, please see: https://militaryadvocate.com/military-offenses/sex-crimes/
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