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Court Martial Appeals Blog

This is a blog focusing on Court Martial Appeals Issues.

Court of Appeals

The Government Petitions the US Supreme Court to Review CAAF Decisions on Statutes of Limitation

October 17, 2019

In February of this year, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (CAAF) issued its opinion in United States v. Briggs. It was the second CAAF decision addressing the statute of limitations in sexual assault cases issued in the last two years. This blog discussed both cases here. Essentially, the Court found that the … Read more

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CAAF Finds Error in Army Court’s Alteration of Guilty Rape Finding

October 4, 2019

The Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (CAAF) issued an opinion in the case of United States v. English this summer that reinforced the limitations on the authority of appellate courts. Specialist English was convicted at court-martial of several specifications resulting from a violent sexual attack on his wife. He was sentenced to 23 … Read more

air force drug conviction

Defense Failure to Object Dooms Issue on Appeal

July 15, 2019

On June 7th, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces issued an opinion in United States v. Gonzales. This opinion reinforces how important it is for defense counsel to get objections and concerns on the record during trial. Specialist Gonzales was charged with, among other offenses, rape of a child, which requires penetration, however … Read more

Discharge Review

Navy-Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals Overturns Sexual Assault Conviction Over Improper Search Authorizations

May 31, 2019

The Navy-Marine Corps Court of Criminal Appeals (NMCCA) recently decided the case of United States v. Armendariz. Master Sergeant Armendariz was a member of MWSS-373 in July 2016. The majority of the squadron, along with its Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel W, were deployed at the time and MSgt Armendariz was part of the Remain Behind … Read more

Court of Appeals

Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces Affirms Conviction Where Search Was Conducted Without Probable Cause

May 13, 2019

The Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (CAAF) recently affirmed the conviction in United States v. Perkins despite a finding by the lower court that the search of Sergeant Perkins’ home was conducted without probable cause. In 2015, a civilian woman contacted the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) onboard Marine Corps Air Station Yuma … Read more

Court of Appeals

Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces Reaffirms Sexual Assault as a General Intent Crime

April 24, 2019

In United States v. McDonald, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces (CAAF) examined the required mens rea, or criminal intent, necessary for a conviction of sexual assault. PFC McDonald’s roommate invited a woman over to his barracks room. He told her that no one else would be in the room. The woman testified … Read more

Discharge Review

Marine’s Discharge Upgraded to Honorable After Application to Naval Discharge Review Board

March 21, 2019

You can submit an application to the Naval Discharge Review Board requesting an upgraded characterization of service. Contact us today to find out how.

court of appeals

Sailor’s Conviction for Sexual Assault for HIV-Positive Sex Upheld

March 6, 2019

In its recent decision in United States v. Forbes, the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces upheld a HIV-positive sailor’s conviction for sexual assault after he had unprotected sex with four women. The Petty Officer tested positive for HIV in 2012 and was instructed to inform any future sexual partners of his status. Despite … Read more

The Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces Reverses Itself on the Statute of Limitations in Rape Cases

February 26, 2019

Article 43(a) of the UCMJ establishes the statute of limitations for military offenses. The statute of limitations is the timeframe for prosecuting criminal offenses in military courts that applies to a particular offense. From 1986 to 2006, the military had five years from the date of most offenses to charge someone with that offense. The … Read more

Discharge Review

Court-Martial Sentencing Procedures Change in 2019

February 6, 2019

The Military Justice Act, passed in 2016, took effect on January 1, 2019. Among the many changes to military justice practice the new law includes adjustments to sentencing procedures. These changes seem primarily to address the disparity in sentences under the previous procedures. Until this year, if an accused elected to be tried by members … Read more