Search This Blog

Saturday, August 12, 2023



Military Defense Lawyer (Former JAG Attorney) News:

Recently, a field grade, military officer defended by attorney Richard V. Stevens (Military Defense Law Offices of Richard V. Stevens, P.C.) was retained in a litigated Board of Inquiry (BOI) hearing.  Because this case was administrative, we can only provide limited general information. 

Our field grade officer client had established a spotless professional reputation and was slated for future command.  But, he was served with notice to show cause for retention in the military based on the alleged sexual assault of a strange and troubled civilian.  A BOI in the military is a litigated board hearing for an officer that addresses involuntary administrative discharge.  In other words, it is a board hearing in which the board members determine if the officer will be kicked out of the military.  Depending on the service branch, a hearing like this is called BOI, show cause, adsep, and/or officer elimination.  If the officer is kicked out involuntarily at the board hearing, he will not receive his retirement and retired benefits.  In addition, in a case like this, the likely discharge characterization would have been Under Other Than Honorable Conditions.   So, the stakes are very high for the client.    

A BOI hearing is a litigated administrative hearing that is similar in procedure to a trial, with fewer evidentiary rules.  The burden of proof is preponderance of the evidence.  These hearings include voir dire and challenges of the members, opening statements, presentation of evidence, questioning of witnesses, closing arguments, and the retention decision by the board members. 

In this case, after presentation of both sides’ cases, including evidence that the complainant’s story made no sense and she had motives to fabricate, the board members concluded that the client did not commit the alleged misconduct – despite the government’s very low burden of proof.  The officer was, therefore, retained in the military service. 

While this administrative board hearing 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 administrative cases, 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.