Personal Injury or Death Caused by Military Medical Malpractice
Under the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA), retired service members and military dependents who have been injured by medical malpractice or negligence…
One area that has seen a significant increase in lately is the area of financial crimes. Many of these involve mobilized reservists who are unaware of what benefits they are entitled to and who…
Under Article 31 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ,) if a person on active duty with the U.S. military is suspected of committing a criminal offense under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, they have the following r…
There are two types of searches in the military, those based on probable cause, and what are called “inspections.” This article will concentrate on what are called probable cause searches. If investigators believe they have pr…
Article 32 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice provides that before charges may be referred to a General Court-Martial, the charges must be “investigated” at an Article 32 investigation. This is not an investigation as you…
Investigations & Article 15s
Frequently, the need to go to trial can be avoided through aggressive representation at the pre-trial stage. Mr. Cassara has represented numerous service members who were pending trial, and succeeded in frequently having the charges either dismissed or disposed of at a lower level. The fact one has had charges brought against them does not mean a court-martial must occur. If you are pending charges, or charges have been brought against you, it may be in your best interests to contact an attorney now, instead of waiting until the situation gets worse.
Mr. Cassara has significant experience in military justice matters. You should not wait until your commander has taken action against you to contact an attorney. Mr. Cassara has succeeded in getting serious allegations of misconduct dismissed before an investigation started, or before charges were brought against the service member. For example, check my recent accomplishments page and you will see other cases where I have succeeded in getting charges dismissed prior to trial, including sometimes right before trial. I am frequently consulted by other attorneys in complex military justice matters.
You may also be facing Article 15/Non-Judicial Punishment and need to decide if you should “accept” punishment by Article 15 or demand trial by court-martial. This decision is one that has many implications and can determine the future of your military career. Given the gravity of this decision, you need an experienced military law attorney on your side. The military will schedule you an appointment with a JAG attorney, but they are frequently over burdened and cannot take the time to fully analyze your case. While “accepting” Article 15/NJP is not an admission of guilt, and you can contest the Article 15/NJP at the hearing, you may not receive what we would consider to be a fair hearing – regrettably our experience has been that the commander’s mind is usually made up before the hearing, so if you accept NJP, you better be prepared to be found guilty and be punished accordingly. In many cases, the imposition of NJP is the first step in adverse action the command will take to separate you from the service, possible with a discharge characterized as under "Other than Honorable Conditions". Our office will provide legal advice to anyone who is facing non-judicial punishment action. We will assist in gathering the facts necessary to make an informed decision whether to accept or refuse NJP and if you elect to accept NJP, we will assist you in preparing your appeal as well as a rebuttal to a letter of reprimand if imposed.
Why You Need a Civilian Military Attorney
When the US military is against you, you’re in deep trouble. Don’t wait until it is too late to contact me. In many cases, we are able to stop the process before it even gets started. Before you make any statements, make sure you speak to an experienced military attorney. As you can see by my court-martial page, I have been very successful in representing service members world-wide. For a detailed explanation of how a court-martial works, see my court-martial page. Remember the prosecution has nearly unlimited resources to use against you. They believe you are guilty. That is why they are prosecuting you. They want you in jail and out of the military. Your military defense counsel simply does not have the resources the prosecution does. They have investigators, police, paralegals and usually several attorneys working to prove you guilty. You need the best defense you can get. While the prosecution office is usually full of experienced attorneys the same is not always true of the defense office. They are also terribly overworked, and have to handle a number of other cases and responsibilities. You have too much at stake to not put together the best defense team possible. CID/OSI/NIS will stop at nothing to get you to make a statement implicating yourself. They are allowed to lie, and will frequently tell you things just to get you to make a statement. Don’t be fooled. Ask for a lawyer, and then call me.
What Civilian Attorney should you hire?
In my over 20 years of civilian military law practice, I have seen numerous former JAGs get off active duty, open a military law practice, and then close it. I have seen numerous attorneys who practice criminal law in state courts representing service members at Article 15/NJP, and I have seen attorneys with almost no criminal law experience do the same. Do not make that mistake. Military law is not like other areas of criminal law, and is a unique system unto itself. You need an attorney with experience in military courts. Not an attorney who practices “Criminal Law.” I have over 20 years of experience in private practice and in the military. I retired from the Army Reserve as a lieutenant colonel. I have the experience and will aggressively defend you. Everyone will tell you to just plead guilty and they will go easy on you. Call me first.
I have obtained excellent results for my clients by frequently getting charges dismissed or withdrawn prior to trial, or after representing my client at Article 15/NJP. See my “Recent Accomplishments” page. I have represented service members world-wide from all branches. You stand to lose your freedom, your career and your family.
One of the questions I am frequently asked is what factors one should consider in determining which attorney to hire. My usual recommendation is you should consider the following:
How much of one’s practice is military law? In my case it is 100% of what I do.
Has the attorney represented service members of all branches? I have.
Is the attorney current on military law issues? Military Law changes. You need an attorney who keeps up on the latest developments.
Cost. Yes, cost is one of the things you need to factor in. My fees are competitive, because I limit my practice to military law.
Will the attorney I speak to actually handle my case?
Will the attorney who represents me be experienced in military law?
But the most important thing is how responsive is the attorney to you, and how comfortable are you with that attorney. If you can’t reach your attorney, or they don’t return your calls, that may be a sign that they have too many cases and can’t devote sufficient time to your case.