Navy E-5 Retained Despite Admitted Drug Possession On Board His Ship

Navy E-5 was discovered in possession of 2 different types of steroids on board a deployed ship, and subsequently admitted to his drug possession. Pursuant to the Navy’s “Zero Tolerance” policy, his command sent his case to an administrative separation board, where he faced the possibility of being discharged with a characterization of Other Than Honorable (OTH). Client contacted our firm after speaking with another civilian lawyer, who declined to accept his case, stating that there was nothing he could do to help. After speaking with the client, we agreed to take his case. At his subsequent administrative separation board, we convinced the member panel to vote 3-0 in favor of retention. Because it was a “mandatory processing” drug case, the case needed approval from BUPERS for retention, which we sought and obtained. RESULT: After being advised by another civilian attorney that his case was hopeless, our client was RETAINED in the U.S. Navy.

Category: Military Success Stories

Navy E-4 Charged with Statutory Rape, Avoids Sex Offender Registration and Jail Time

Navy E-4 engaged in a 9-month sexual relationship with a 14-year old girl. This relationship included the girl taking numerous nude pictures of herself and sending them to our client, which constituted the possession of child pornography. Our client was charged with carnal knowledge, possession of child pornography, and sodomy with/on a child under the age of 16, and was facing the possibility of 50 years confinement and Dishonorable Discharge. Using evidence we developed through cross-examination of the witnesses at our client’s Article 32 hearing, we were able to convince the chain of command to handle our client’s case administratively, rather than at a General Court-Martial. Result: Our client did not serve a single day in jail, will not have a criminal record, will not receive a punitive discharge from the Navy, and will not have to register as a sex offender.

Category: Military Success Stories

Board of Inquiry Voted 3-0 to Retain Navy O-2E Despite Pattern of Sexual Harassment

Navy O-2E engaged in a pattern of inappropriate behavior with subordinate female Sailors. This behavior included telling numerous females, both orally and by email, that they “looked hot,” and suggesting to another that the command should install a stripper pole in the work station for her to dance on. Client was counseled informally by a supervisor but his behavior persisted. After slapping a female in the buttocks, client received a formal Letter of Instruction from the CO. Only months after receiving the Letter of Instruction, client made inappropriate comments to another female Sailor about her sweater “hiding her assets” and slapped her on the buttocks with a clipboard. JAG Defense worked with client for a year to facilitate his counseling and rehabilitation, and represented client at his subsequent Board of Inquiry for sexual harassment. At his Board, we convinced the victim of his sexual harassment to testify on his behalf, and presented compelling evidence of his remorse, his rehabilitation, and his commitment to refrain from such behavior in the future. Result: The Board voted 3-0 to RETAIN our client in the U.S. Navy.

Category: Military Success Stories

Court-Martial Charge Withdrawn and Dismissed for Navy E-6

Navy E-6 was charged with BAH fraud totaling approximately $76,000. Client was pending a General Court-Martial when he retained our services, where he faced the possibility of 10 years of confinement and a Dishonorable Discharge. We were able to convince his command that our client’s receipt of excess BAH was the result of an administrative oversight, rather than any criminal intent. Further, we were able to reduce the overpayment from $76,000 to approximately $8,000. In exchange for restitution from our client for the significantly reduced amount, the command WITHDREW and DISMISSED the court-martial charge against our client, and our client voluntarily separated from the Navy with an HONORABLE characterization of service.

Category: Military Success Stories

Navy E-7 Court-Martial Charges Withdrawn, Honorably Retired

Navy E-7 held his official retirement ceremony, including a program listing the awards and decorations he earned during his 22 year career. While he was on terminal leave, his command grew suspicious of some of his awards, and launched an investigation into whether he actually earned the awards. Our client was pulled off terminal leave to face court-martial charges that he was wearing awards to which he was not entitled, including 2 Navy Achievement Medals, 2 Expert Marksmanship Awards, an Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, an Expeditionary Warfare Device, a SeaBee Combat Warfare insignia, a Navy Parachutist Badge, a Fleet Marine Force Ribbon, and a Combat Action Ribbon. Ultimately, the command charged our client with the unlawful wearing of these awards and false official statement for including them in his retirement program. Our client faced up to a year in jail, a federal criminal record, a punitive discharge, reduction to E-1, and the loss of his entire Navy retirement. After an exhaustive investigation, the military lawyers at JAG Defense were able to demonstrate to the chain of command that our client’s official service record was not accurate, and that our client was entitled to wear all questioned awards except the Navy Parachutist badge and the Fleet Marine Force Ribbon. We further negotiated an alternate disposition in the case with regard to the Parachutist badge and Fleet Marine Force Ribbon that avoided a court-martial for our client. Result: No confinement, no reduction in paygrade, no punitive discharge, no criminal record, and our client was able to HONORABLY RETIRE from the U.S. Navy.

Category: Military Success Stories

Navy E-7 Successfully Defended by JAG Defense in Aggravated Sexual Assault Trial

Navy E-7 was charged with Aggravated Sexual Assault and Fraternization following a night of partying with his female Division Officer and other junior Sailors. His Division Officer alleged that he sexually assaulted her while she was substantially incapacitated due to intoxication. The government secured the services of a forensic psychiatrist who assessed the alleged victim and was prepared to testify that her memory of the alleged sexual assault was credible and that she was incapable of consenting to the sexual acts that she alleged had occurred. The attorneys at JAG Defense litigated a motion to prevent the government’s expert witness from being permitted to offer such testimony, which was granted by the military judge. At trial, our cross-examination of the alleged victim highlighted the various inconsistencies in her story, as well as a significant motive to fabricate her allegations against our client. Result: The Officer and Enlisted Member Panel found our client NOT GUILTY of Aggravated Sexual Assault. Our client was convicted only of Fraternization, and received No Confinement, No Punitive Discharge, and No Sex Offender Registration

Category: Military Success Stories

JAG Defense Defends Navy JAG in Professional Responsibility Complaint

A Navy JAG was issued a Professional Responsibility Complaint alleging approximately 92 different violations of ethical standards and proposing decertification of the client as a Judge Advocate. Client was serving as the Trial Counsel in a complex, high-visibility case. After the Convening Authority approved a Pretrial Agreement – the terms of which our client strongly and vocally opposed – a public outcry resulted. As a result of the public outcry, a JAG Manual investigation was initiated. The Attorneys at JAG Defense worked with the client to fight the allegations, ultimately submitting a 58-page summary of the case proceedings, a 30-page detailed point-by-point rebuttal, a 19-page response to additional information, and hundreds of supporting documents to the Rules Counsel challenging the allegations levied against the client. After a review of the response, the Rules Counsel issued a written decision concluding that insufficient evidence existed to support the allegations against the client to warrant further processing, concluding with only a written counseling, and a determination that no further action be taken against our client.

Category: Military Success Stories

Discharged Navy E-5 Receives Retirement Benefits after Application to BCNR

Prior to JAG Defense representation, a Navy E-5 was discharged for misconduct, commission of a serious offense and sexual harassment after 18 years but less than 20 years of service qualifying for retirement. Client hired JAG Defense to assist him in attempting to obtain retirement benefits despite his discharge. JAG Defense prepared application to BCNR, who granted relief giving client credit for remaining time to reach 20 years of service, to include back pay for 2 years of active duty, and retirement pay effective from the date client would have reached 20 years of service. Client will now receive full retirement benefits for life.

Category: Military Success Stories

O-5 Commanding Officer Retained in Navy By O-6 Member Panel

Navy O-5 Commanding Officer was relieved from command due to allegations of sexual harassment and conduct unbecoming an officer. At his Board of Inquiry, JAG Defense demonstrated that the allegations against our client had been greatly exaggerated by his accusers, and that the investigation into his alleged behavior was rushed, one-sided, and incomplete. JAG Defense also presented compelling evidence of our client’s otherwise exceptional 22+ year Naval career. Result: The O-6 member panel voted 3-0 to RETAIN our client in the U.S. Navy. 

Category: Military Success Stories

O-4 Officer Represented at Admiral’s Mast on Safeguarding Classified Material

Navy O-4 was suspected of mailing classified information from Iraq to the United States. As a result, he was offered Admiral’s Mast for willfully failing to properly safeguard and store classified material. If found guilty at Mast, our client would have likely faced administrative separation proceedings and/or the loss of his security clearance. The attorneys at JAG Defense prepared a comprehensive defense to the charge at Admiral’s Mast. Result: At Mast, the Admiral withdrew the charge against our client.

Category: Military Success Stories