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UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent

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 Without Consent?

Ucmj Article 120 Sexual Assault Without ConsentSexual assault without consent, outlined under Article 120 of the UCMJ, is a serious offense that involves engaging in sexual acts without the other party’s consent. This can include various forms of sexual misconduct where the victim does not agree to the sexual activity. The military justice system imposes harsh penalties for those convicted of this crime, including dishonorable discharge, long-term confinement, and mandatory registration as a sex offender.

The complexities and severe consequences associated with Article 120 charges make it imperative for the accused to seek immediate legal representation from the best military defense lawyers. These professionals possess an in-depth understanding of military law and are adept at navigating the intricacies of court-martial proceedings. They work diligently to protect the rights of the accused, ensuring that every aspect of the case is thoroughly examined.

Hiring experienced UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent military defense lawyers is crucial because they can scrutinize the evidence presented, identify any procedural errors, and challenge the credibility of witnesses. They develop robust defense strategies to mitigate the charges or achieve a favorable verdict. Additionally, these lawyers provide critical support and guidance throughout the legal process, helping the accused cope with the emotional and psychological stress accompanying such serious allegations.

Furthermore, accusations of sexual assault without consent carry a significant social stigma, affecting both the personal and professional lives of the accused. Effective legal representation can help manage these reputational risks by ensuring the defense is well-prepared and persuasive. This aids in protecting the accused’s military career and future civilian life.

Facing charges under UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent is daunting. Seeking the best military defense lawyers ensures that the accused receives comprehensive legal support, significantly improving their chances of a favorable outcome in this challenging situation.

Note: The maximum and minimum punishments for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent (Sexual Assault) vary depending on the date of the offense.

In the military, the crime of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent, 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 Without Consent (Sexual Assault?

For UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent 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 Without Consent committed after 27 December 2023

  • Under the Sentencing Parameters, Sexual Assault Without Consent, 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.
  • 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 Sexual Assault Without Consent Article 120 UCMJ

A military member convicted of Sexual Assault Without Consent, Article 120 UCMJ, 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 Without Consent (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 without the consent of (state the name of the alleged victim).

Sample Model Specification: UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent

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 penetrating Jane Victim’s mouth with SGT Ronald Don’s penis, with an intent to humiliate, without the consent of Jane Victim.

Model Specification: UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent

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 _________]], without the consent of ___________.

What are the Definitions for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent (Sexual Assault)?

Marriage and UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent. Marriage is not a defense to any offense in violation of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent (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 Without Consent (Sexual Assault) has Been Raised, then the Military Judge Will Give the Following Instructions:

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 Without Consent

“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 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 Sexual Assault Without Consent Court Martial Lawyers

If you are suspected or accused of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent (Sexual Assault), reach out to speak with one of our experienced military court martial lawyers to discuss your best defense strategy.

Article 120 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) specifically addresses sexual assault offenses within the military. One critical component of this article is “Sexual Assault Without Consent,” which aims to protect service members from non-consensual sexual acts and ensure perpetrators are held accountable.

Overview of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent

Sexual assault without consent under Article 120 UCMJ is defined as any sexual act committed upon another person without their consent. The key elements include:

1. Sexual Act: This refers to any form of sexual penetration, however slight, with any body part or object, or contact between the mouth and genitalia or anus.

2. Lack of Consent: Consent is defined as a freely given agreement to the conduct at issue by a competent person. It cannot be obtained through force, threat of force, intimidation, or when the victim is incapable of consenting due to sleep, unconsciousness, or impairment by drugs, alcohol, or mental disability.

Legal Framework of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent

Under Article 120, the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused committed a sexual act upon the victim and that the act was non-consensual. The absence of consent is a crucial element, and the prosecution must demonstrate that the victim did not agree to the sexual act freely and voluntarily.

Policy Objectives of UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent

Protection of Service Members: Article 120 aims to protect military personnel from sexual violence and ensure a safe working environment. It recognizes the unique circumstances of military life, where power imbalances and close living quarters can increase the risk of sexual assault.

Accountability and Deterrence: By clearly defining sexual assault without consent and establishing severe penalties, the UCMJ seeks to hold offenders accountable and deter future misconduct. Penalties can include dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of pay, and confinement.

Support for Victims: The military provides various support services for victims of sexual assault, including medical care, counseling, and legal assistance, to ensure their well-being and encourage reporting of offenses.

Military Defense Lawyers for UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent

UCMJ Article 120 Sexual Assault Without Consent is a vital legal provision for addressing and preventing sexual assault within the military. It underscores the commitment of the armed forces to uphold the safety, dignity, and rights of all service members.

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