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Thursday, August 27, 2020



Military Defense Lawyer (Former JAG Attorney) News:

Recently, a military senior noncommissioned officer (NCO) defended by attorney Richard V. Stevens (Military Defense Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens, P.C.) had the domestic violence and sexual assault case he faced dropped by the military before court-martial charges were preferred against him (UCMJ Article 128 and Article 120).

The military client was accused of, and investigated for, allegedly sexually and physically assaulting his former wife during their marriage.  This alleged abuse was never reported until the client learned of information about his wife that led to divorce proceedings and a custody fight.  Within that context, the wife claimed she had been abused by the accused.  In the meantime, she was openly engaging in behavior in an attempt to provoke conflict between them and she was continually going to the military to try to derail the client’s career.

This type of scenario is growing more and more prevalent in the military.  Military spouses know this topic is of great political interest, and they know what leverage a domestic violence and/or sexual assault conviction could provide them in custody battles.  This case was headed toward preferral of court-martial charges and the defense was put on notice that they would be coming shortly.

However, the complaining witness just could not get out of her own way.  Her adversarial behavior, her constant provocations, her motives to lie and her lack of credibility ultimately resulted in the military deciding to drop the court-martial case.  As you can imagine in this political environment, her behavior had to be extreme to lead to a dropped case. 

Had the case gone to court and resulted in a conviction for domestic violence and/or sexual assault, the client could have been sentenced to a punitive discharge, a lengthy term of confinement in prison and, in addition, he could have been required to register as a sex offender.  Thankfully, the court-martial case was dropped and he was spared this risk of devastation to his future. 

While this military court-martial and sexual assault case was successfully defended, 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, type "rape" or "sexual assault" into the search bar above the blog posts and see:

We offer free consultations for a case you may be involved in.  Just call us. 

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: I (attorney Richard V. Stevens) am a former active duty military lawyer (JAG). My perspectives and advice, therefore, are based upon my experience as military defense lawyer and as a civilian criminal defense lawyer 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 for a free consultation. These military defense law offices are located in the Washington DC, Northern Virginia, Maryland, National Capital Region (NCR), but the military defense representation is worldwide – when necessary, the attorneys travel to wherever the client is stationed around the world.