Fort Campbell Military Defense Lawyer

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Fort Campbell Military Defense Attorney

Military law is a specific legal system that sets regulations for the conduct of military personnel. This branch of law only applies to those who are official members of a military organization, and the rules set in place govern the rights and duties of those in the military, along with how to discipline individuals who engage in misconduct. If you have been accused of violating military law, you need a Fort Campbell military lawyer as soon as possible to start your defense.

At the law office of Michael J. Thompson, Attorney at Law, we understand how unnerving it can feel to be in this battle alone. Because of this, our Fort Campbell military lawyers are always here to guide our clients through the process so they can be supported and informed on their cases. We have immense pride in helping those who have dedicated their lives to protect and serve our country, and our firm would be honored to return the favor by providing effective legal defense.

Understanding the Role of a Fort Campbell Military Lawyer

Fort Campbell military lawyers can be one of the most critical pieces to ensuring that the legal needs of soldiers and other military personnel are met and protected. Their roles and responsibilities are wide-ranging; some of the most useful services cited by past clients include:

Defense in Court Martial

The primary responsibility of a lawyer who provides court martial defense is to represent service members who have been accused of committing military crimes. These crimes can range from minor offenses, like disobeying a command, to more serious allegations of assault, theft, or even treason. To properly defend these allegations in a court-martial, you need an attorney who has a comprehensive understanding of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ).

Legal Advice on Active Military Duty

When one signs up for the military, they are agreeing to abide by a set of strict rules, but these can be difficult to comprehend. Fort Campbell military lawyers understand this common challenge, which is why they provide professional guidance when needed. For example, a soldier might need help understanding what constitutes insubordination to determine if they have violated any of these rules.

A military attorney can also advise on issues related to a service member’s deployment, transfer, promotion, or even the implications of different military orders they are engaged with. In addition, service members are granted certain benefits, like medical care and housing allowances. An attorney can help ensure that they understand the nature of these entitlements and that their rights have not been unlawfully stripped away.

Counsel on Administrative Matters

Sometimes, a military service member must participate in an administrative proceeding. This could be in response to an allegation of professional misconduct or to discuss the details of a medical discharge. No matter what the specifics are, a Fort Campbell military lawyer can supervise these proceedings and engage in certain actions, like submitting documentation and representing their clients in court hearings.

Home and Family Law Issues

Because the demands of military service are unique to the average citizen, it can have significant implications for their personal lives, like causing divorce. This is where a military attorney can also be of service. They can help their clients file for divorce, negotiate child custody arrangements, navigate the adoption process, or negotiate a fair spousal support settlement.

It’s unreasonable to think that a military member would only need legal support for issues specific to military law. It is well known they have lives outside of their military identity, so they also need custom legal support for these issues so they can continue to focus on their service.

What Are the Most Common Military Law Defense Strategies?

Having a solid defense strategy can make the difference between a service member facing unnecessary penalties and being able to have them removed. While every case will need to be evaluated individually to assess which defense might be a good fit, some of the most commonly used defenses in military law include:

Challenging the Evidence

Every piece of evidence being used against you will need to be thoroughly evaluated by your defense attorney. In this analysis, they are looking for any inconsistencies or shortcomings in the prosecution’s case. If they can point these flaws out in court, thereby raising doubts about the accuracy of the accusations, it can reduce or dismiss the charges you face.

Violation of Rights

Service members are entitled to a number of rights under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). The right to remain silent and refuse to answer questions until an attorney is present are a few of these rights. If there is any evidence to suggest that their rights have been violated by law enforcement, such as an unlawful search of their property or not being informed of the charges they face, it could undermine the integrity of the prosecution’s case.

Alibi or Fact-Based Defense

Sometimes, an alibi or an irrefutable fact can completely destroy allegations against a military defendant. In the case of an alibi, this would be an individual who would testify under oath that you were with them during the alleged incident. This would make it impossible for the defendant to be at the specific location where the prosecution claims they were.

The same concept can be applied to fact-based evidence, such as surveillance footage that shows a clear contradiction between what a defendant is being accused of and what actually happened. A military defense attorney is responsible for legally collecting a witness’s alibi statement or other fact-based evidence to ensure that it can be used in court and not be challenged.

Mental Health or Capacity Defense

Because many military members suffer from varying mental health issues, using this as a defense position is quite common. To enact this defense, a defendant would claim that they were not in the right state of mind during the incident and did not have the mental capacity to understand the consequences of their actions. Common mental health disorders for military members include extreme cases of PTSD or other untreated illnesses, like schizophrenia.

Coercion or Duress

Another common defense that might apply to your case is to claim that you were coerced or under duress when engaging in the misconduct. An example of this could be a scenario where someone threatened to harm you or a loved one if you did not follow their commands to engage in illegal activity. Taking this position will require an attorney to show how their client was forced into the act, leaving them with no other option but to commit the crime.

FAQs

Q: Can a Service Member Choose Their Own Defense Attorney?

A: Military personnel have the authority to choose any defense attorney they think can do the most effective job. While everyone can be assigned an attorney for free if they would like to exercise this right, they also have the right to hire their own private attorney who is specifically trained in military defense cases. Some qualities to seek when hiring a military lawyer include their education, years of experience in the field, and how many wins they have in their record.

Q: How Does a Court-Martial Differ From a Civilian Criminal Trial?

A: A court-martial is a military court specifically designed to investigate cases that involve the UCMJ. This differs from civilian criminal trials, which happen in a traditional court setting under federal or state laws that are not specific to the military. A court-martial jury is often composed of military officers who have a stronger understanding of military operations compared to a diverse range of general citizens found in legal cases outside of military law.

Q: What Legal Protections Are Available to Service Members Accused of a Crime?

A: There are many similar legal protections that exist between civilians and military members, like the right to remain silent, obtain a lawyer, and receive a fair trial. However, there are additional protections under the UCMJ that the average citizen does not have access to. For example, Article 32 allows military members to engage in a “preliminary hearing” for certain offenses to determine if there is enough evidence to justify a court-martial.

Q: What Role Do Commanding Officers Have in Military Legal Proceedings?

A: Commanding officers in the military have the authority to convene court-martials and make certain non-judicial punishment decisions. For example, they have the authority to issue an Article 15, which is a form of non-judicial punishment for minor offenses, like disrespectful behavior or minor drug use. They also are responsible for ensuring that their subordinates receive a fair trial and have access to the legal representation they request.

Contact Michael J. Thompson, Attorney at Law, Today for Military Defense

Whether you are in the army, navy, marines, or air force, our experienced attorneys are capable of providing a strong defense to protect your rights. We can help you reach the outcome you are looking for.

Don’t face these charges alone. Our firm would be honored to help protect your rights and freedoms. If you have been accused of engaging in illegal behavior in the military, contact Michael J. Thompson, Attorney at Law, today. We look forward to learning more about you and how we can help with your case.

Free Initial Consultation Today

If you live in Oak Grove, Fort Campbell, Hopkinsville, or Cadiz, Kentucky, don’t face your criminal charges on your own. Reach out to criminal defense attorney Michael J. Thompson and schedule a free consultation to discuss your criminal charges. You can reach Mr. Thompson at (270) 439-1175. You can also contact our law firm by filling out our online contact form.

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15744 Fort Campbell Blvd
Oak Grove, KY 42262