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UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person

Note: This law applies only to Article 120 UCMJ Sexual Assault offenses committed on and after 1 January 2019.

What is UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person?

UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another PersonSexual assault by inducing a belief through artifice, pretense, or concealment that the accused was another person is a serious charge under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). This offense involves deceiving the victim into believing that the perpetrator is someone else to obtain consent for a sexual act. This form of sexual assault is considered highly egregious due to the deliberate and deceptive nature of the act.

Under UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person, the penalties for this type of sexual assault are severe, reflecting the military’s strict stance on sexual misconduct. Convictions can result in mandatory confinement ranging from 30 months to 10 years, dishonorable discharge, and mandatory registration as a sex offender. These penalties underscore the serious nature of the offense and the lasting impact on the accused’s military career and personal life.

If you are accused of sexual assault under Article 120 UCMJ, it is critical to seek the assistance of the best military defense lawyers. The complexities of military law and the high stakes involved require a deep understanding of the UCMJ and the court-martial process. Experienced Article 120 UCMJ lawyers are essential in navigating the legal landscape, protecting your rights, and crafting a robust defense strategy.

Defending against accusations of this nature involves scrutinizing the evidence, identifying procedural errors, and challenging the credibility of the prosecution’s case. An adept defense lawyer can meticulously review the circumstances of the case, uncover inconsistencies in the victim’s account, and present compelling arguments that may mitigate the charges or lead to an acquittal.

Moreover, the social stigma and potential career-ending consequences associated with a conviction necessitate a vigorous defense. Legal representation by seasoned military defense lawyers can significantly influence the outcome of the case, helping to preserve your reputation and future within the military.

Facing charges of sexual assault by inducing a belief through deception under UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person is a grave matter that demands the support of experienced military defense lawyers. The skill of Article 120 UCMJ lawyers is vital in ensuring a fair trial and the best possible defense, providing you with the legal support needed to navigate this challenging situation.

Note: The maximum and minimum punishments for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person (Sexual Assault) vary depending on the date of the offense.

In the military, the crime of UCMJ Article 120, Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person, falls under the general offense category of Sexual Assault. It is one of the more serious offenses under the UCMJ and carries significant mandatory punishments. Offenses committed after December 27, 2023, carry a mandatory minimum jail sentence of 30-120 months (Between 2 years and 6 months to 10 years of confinement) and a Dishonorable Discharge or Dismissal. If convicted, the defendant must register as a Federal and State sex offender.

What are the Sexual Assault Offenses Under Article 120 UCMJ?

What are the Maximum Punishments for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person?

For UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person committed between 1 January 2019 and 27 December 2023:

  • 30 Years of Confinement
  • Total Forfeitures
  • Reduction to E-1
  • A Dishonorable Discharge or a Dismissal is a mandatory minimum sentence for this offense.
  • Note: Registration as a State & Federal Sex Offender
  • Federal Felony Conviction

For UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person committed after 27 December 2023

  • Under the Sentencing Parameters, Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person, Article 120 UCMJ (Sexual Assault) is a Category 3 Offense
  • Mandatory confinement ranges from 30-120 months (Between 2 years and 6 months to 10 years)
  • A Dishonorable Discharge or a Dismissal is a mandatory minimum sentence for this offense.
  • Note:  Registration as a State & Federal Sex Offender
  • Note: The Military Judge MAY impose a period of confinement less than the jurisdictional maximum period of confinement upon finding specific facts that warrant such a sentence. Manual for Courts-Martial, United States (2024 ed.), Appendix 12B-C
  • Federal Felony Conviction

What are the collateral consequences of having to register as a convicted sex offender?

Sex Offenders Often Cannot Live Near or Visit “Places Where Children Congregate.”
What does that mean? It means a registered sex offender may not be allowed to live near or visit schools, parks and playgrounds, beaches, shopping malls, stores, movie theaters, community centers, places of worship, libraries, recreational facilities, skating rinks, bus stops, and many more.

Potential Collateral Consequences of a Conviction of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

A military member convicted of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person, must register as a sex offender. A registered sex offender may suffer the following collateral consequences:
  • Denied housing
  • Loss of family
  • Isolation
  • No educational opportunities
  • Unemployable
  • Physical assault
  • Increased homelessness
  • Harassment
  • Financial hardship
  • Stigmatization
  • The decline in mental health
  • No internet access
  • Deterioration of social bonds
  • Loss of residency
  • Deterioration of social bonds
  • Difficulty finding employment
  • Difficulty finding housing
  • Difficulty with relationships
  • Social disgrace and humiliation
  • Loss of friends
  • Loss of custody of children
  • Lack of privacy

What are the Elements of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person (Sexual Assault)?

  1. That at or near (location), on or about (date), the accused committed a sexual act upon (victim) by (state the alleged sexual act); and
  2. That the accused did so by inducing a belief by artifice, pretense, or concealment that the accused was another person.

Sample Model Specification: UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person (Sexual Assault)

In that SGT Ronald Don, 82nd Airborne Division, US Army, did, at or near Fort Liberty, NC, on or about 4 July 2024, commit a sexual act upon Jane Victim, by causing contact between Jane Victim’s mouth and SGT Ronald Don’s penis, with an intent to gratify the sexual desire of SGT Ronald Don, by inducing a belief by concealment that the said accused was another person.

Sample Specification for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

In that __________ (personal jurisdiction data), did (at/on board—location), on or about ________20__, commit a sexual act upon __________, by [penetrating ___________’s (vulva) (anus) (mouth) with __________’s penis] [causing contact between _______’s mouth and ________’s (penis) (vulva) (scrotum) (anus)] [penetrating _______’s (vulva) (penis) (anus) with (______’s body part) (an object) to wit:______, with an intent to [(abuse) (humiliate) (harass) (degrade) _______] [(arouse) (gratify) the sexual desire of  _________]], by inducing a belief by (artifice) (pretense) (concealment) that the said accused was another person.

What are the Definitions for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person (Sexual Assault)?

Marriage and UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

Marriage is not a defense to any offense in violation of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person (Sexual Assault).

If necessary, include the following instruction: Marriage is not a defense to this offense.

“Sexual act” means:

  1. the penetration, however slight, of the penis into the vulva or anus or mouth;
  2. contact between the mouth and the penis, vulva, scrotum, or anus; or
  3. the penetration, however slight, of the vulva or penis or anus of another by any part of the body or any object, with an intent to abuse, humiliate, harass, or degrade any person or to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person.

The “vulva” is the external genital organs of the female, including the entrance of the vagina and the labia majora and labia minora.

“Labia” is the Latin and medically correct term for “lips.”

If Evidence of Consent to UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person (Sexual Assault) has Been Raised, then the Military Judge Will Give the Following Instruction:

The evidence has raised the issue of whether Jane Victim consented to the sexual conduct listed in The Specification One of The Charge. All of the evidence concerning consent to the sexual conduct is relevant. It must be considered in determining whether the government has proven (the elements of the offense) (that the sexual conduct was done by state the applicable element).

Stated another way, evidence the alleged victim consented to the sexual conduct, either alone or in conjunction with the other evidence in this case, may cause you to have a reasonable doubt as to whether the government has proven (every element of the offense) (that the sexual conduct was done by state the applicable element).

Consent and UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

“Consent” means a freely given agreement to the conduct at issue by a competent person. An expression of lack of consent through words or conduct means there is no consent. Lack of verbal or physical resistance does not constitute consent. Submission resulting from the use of force, threat of force, or placing another person in fear also does not constitute consent. A current or previous dating or social or sexual relationship by itself or the manner of dress of the person involved with the accused in the conduct at issue does not constitute consent.

  • A sleeping, unconscious, or incompetent person cannot consent.
  • A person cannot consent to force causing or likely to cause death or grievous bodily harm.
  • A person cannot consent to being rendered unconscious.
  • A person cannot consent while under threat or in fear.
  • A “competent person” is a person who possesses the physical and mental ability to consent.
  • An “incompetent person” is a person who is incapable of appraising the nature of the conduct at issue, or physically incapable of declining participation in or communicating unwillingness to engage in the sexual act at issue.
  • All the surrounding circumstances are to be considered in determining whether a person
    gave consent.

UCMJ Article 120 Military Defense Lawyers for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

If you are suspected or accused of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief by Artifice, Pretense, or Concealment that the Accused was Another Person, reach out to speak with one of our experienced military court martial lawyers to discuss your best defense strategy.

Intro to Article 120 UCMJ: Sexual Assault by Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

Article 120 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) addresses various forms of sexual assault within the military. One specific provision under Article 120 is sexual assault by inducing a belief that the accused was another person. This offense involves deceit and manipulation, undermining the victim’s ability to consent. This guide provides an in-depth understanding of this specific offense, the elements required for conviction, and the broader implications of such a charge.

Basics of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

To secure a conviction for sexual assault by inducing a belief that the accused was another person under Article 120, the prosecution must prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  • Act of Sexual Assault: The accused committed a sexual act with another person.
  • Deception: The accused induced the victim to believe that the accused was another person.
  • Lack of Consent: The victim did not consent to the sexual act with the accused but was deceived into believing they were engaging with another individual.

This form of sexual assault involves a specific type of deception that vitiates the victim’s ability to give informed consent, making the act non-consensual and criminal.

Collateral Consequences of a Conviction of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

A conviction for sexual assault by inducing a belief that the accused was another person under Article 120 has numerous collateral consequences, significantly impacting various aspects of the convicted individual’s life.

Sex Offender Registration for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

One of the most immediate and lasting consequences of a conviction for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person is mandatory sex offender registration. This involves:

  • Public Registry: The individual’s information, including their name, photograph, and address, will be listed on a public sex offender registry, accessible by anyone.
  • Reporting Requirements: The convicted individual must regularly report their whereabouts to law enforcement, including any changes in address, employment, or educational status.
  • Residency Restrictions: Many jurisdictions impose restrictions on where registered sex offenders can live, often prohibiting them from residing near schools, parks, or other areas where children are present.
  • Travel Restrictions: Travel can be restricted, both domestically and internationally, as many countries have strict entry requirements for individuals listed on sex offender registries.
  • Employment Challenges: Finding employment can be exceedingly difficult, as many employers conduct background checks and may be unwilling to hire individuals with a sex offense conviction.

Federal Felony Conviction for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

A conviction under UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person is classified as a federal felony. The consequences of a federal felony conviction include:

  • Loss of Civil Rights: Convicted felons often lose certain civil rights, such as the right to vote, the right to serve on a jury, and the right to own or possess firearms.
  • Employment Barriers: Many employers are hesitant to hire individuals with a felony conviction, particularly for positions of trust or responsibility.
  • Professional Licenses: Obtaining or retaining professional licenses can be challenging, as many licensing boards require a clean criminal record.
  • Social Stigma: The social stigma associated with being a convicted felon can lead to isolation and difficulties in personal relationships.
  • Difficulty in Housing: Finding rental housing can be difficult, as many landlords conduct background checks and may refuse to rent to individuals with a felony record.

Dishonorable Discharge for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

A dishonorable discharge is one of the most severe forms of military discharge and has far-reaching implications, including:

  • Loss of Military Benefits: Individuals with a dishonorable discharge lose all military benefits, including retirement pay, healthcare benefits, and access to military facilities.
  • Employment Impact: A dishonorable discharge is a significant red flag for potential employers, making it difficult to secure post-military employment.
  • Social Consequences: The stigma associated with a dishonorable discharge can lead to estrangement from fellow service members and social isolation.
  • Ineligibility for Veterans’ Benefits: Those with a dishonorable discharge are ineligible for veterans’ benefits, including education benefits under the GI Bill and VA home loans.

Confinement for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

Confinement is another consequence of a conviction under Article 120. The length of confinement can vary, but it involves:

  • Loss of Freedom: Confinement results in the loss of personal freedom and separation from family and community.
  • Impact on Mental Health: The experience of imprisonment can lead to significant mental health issues, including depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress.
  • Reintegration Challenges: After release, individuals often face significant challenges reintegrating into society, finding employment, and re-establishing personal relationships.

Policy Implications of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

Sexual assault in the military has profound implications for military readiness, unit cohesion, and trust within the ranks. It undermines the values of respect and integrity that are fundamental to military service. Recognizing the severity of this issue, Congress has taken several steps to address sexual assault within the military:

  • Legislative Reforms: Congress has passed numerous legislative reforms aimed at improving the handling of sexual assault cases in the military, including the National Defense Authorization Acts (NDAA) that mandate specific changes to the UCMJ.
  • Special Victims’ Counsel: The establishment of the Special Victims’ Counsel (SVC) program provides legal assistance and support to victims of sexual assault, helping them navigate the military justice system.
  • Improved Reporting Mechanisms: Enhancements to reporting mechanisms, such as anonymous reporting options and hotlines, aim to make it easier for victims to report assaults without fear of retaliation.
  • Prevention Programs: Increased emphasis on prevention programs and training to educate service members about consent, respect, and the consequences of sexual assault.

These actions reflect a commitment to addressing the problem of sexual assault in the military and ensuring a safer and more respectful environment for all service members. Call our court martial lawyers to discuss your UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person case.

Court Martial Attorneys for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person

UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault By Inducing a Belief the Accused was Another Person’s provisions on sexual assault by inducing a belief the accused was another person highlight the seriousness with which the military treats such offenses. The elements required for conviction, the severe collateral consequences, and the broader policy implications underscore the importance of addressing sexual assault comprehensively within the military.

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