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Friday, June 22, 2012

Civilian Court-Martial Lawyers: Military Academy Cadet Represented by Attorney Richard V. Stevens has Court-Martial Charges and Case Alleging Rape (UCMJ Article 120) Dropped by the Government

Military Defense Lawyer (Former JAG Attorney) News:

Recently, an Air Force Academy (USAFA) cadet represented by military law attorney Richard V. Stevens (Military Defense Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens, P.C.) had the court-martial allegations, and case, he faced dropped by the government. 

The client faced court-martial allegations that he raped a civilian associate because she claimed to be too intoxicated to consent to sexual activity (UCMJ Article 120, “substantial incapacitation”).  During the pre-trial Article 32 hearing, the defense presented compelling evidence and testimony that disputed the complainant’s claims that she was too intoxicated to consent to sex.  This included photographs from the night at issue, observations by witnesses to the events that evening, and conversations, phone calls and text messages by the complainant herself. 

The findings and recommendations of the Investigating Officer at the Article 32 hearing included his opinion that reasonable grounds to believe the client committed the alleged offenses did not exist, and a recommendation that the case be dropped.  Based on this recommendation, the court-martial allegations and case were dropped, allowing the cadet to graduate from the USAFA.  If convicted, the client faced a maximum court-martial sentence including life in prison, dismissal (dishonorable discharge for an officer) and forfeitures of all pay and allowances. 

While the court-martial in this case was dropped, and the case was successfully defended against, it is important to understand that every case has different facts, and success in some previous case(s) does not guarantee success in any particular future military case.  No military lawyer or civilian defense lawyer, including those who specialize in military law, can guarantee the outcome of any military case. 

For more information on the military justice system, please see our other blog posts, including (  Thank you. 

By: Attorney Richard V. Stevens
Civilian criminal defense lawyer and military defense lawyer
Military Defense Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens, P.C.

Blog postscript: Attorney Frank J. Spinner and I (attorney Richard V. Stevens) are former active duty military lawyers (JAG). Our perspectives and advice, therefore, are based upon our experience as military defense lawyers and as civilian criminal defense lawyers practicing exclusively in the area of military law and military justice. This blog addresses issues in military law, military justice, military discipline, military defense, court-martial practice, the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and other military and/or legal topics. Nothing posted in this blog should be substituted for legal advice in any particular case. If you seek legal advice for a particular case, please contact The Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens and The Law Office of Frank J. Spinner for a free consultation. These military defense law offices are located in Colorado Springs, Colorado and Southern New Jersey, but the military defense representation is worldwide – when necessary, the attorneys travel to wherever the client is stationed.

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