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The Military Justice System (UCMJ) needs to be changed!

Johnny

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It is an extremely unjust system. There are many flaws in this system but for now I will discuss the trial process.

A trio of members may suffice for a Special Court-Martial proceeding, even though greater numbers are allowed. Unlike civilian juries, the Military jury may consist of more than a dozen members. For a General Court-Martial to proceed, there must be at least five members present.
Members are allowed a single vote toward a verdict, via a secret ballot. While a civilian court requires a unanimous vote among the jury to convict the defendant, a guilty verdict may be arrived at if two-thirds of the members vote the accused guilty of any charges.

In addition to swiftly arriving at verdicts, military trials never produce a hung jury.
United States military jury - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


I find it completely unacceptable that servicemembers can be deprived of their liberty with such a low standard of justice.

The fact you take an oath to protect and defend a Constitution that doesn't even protect you is absured.

I did my time and I know there's a need for order in the military.

But to deprivation of due process is not the way we should go in a free society.
 

American

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It is an extremely unjust system. There are many flaws in this system but for now I will discuss the trial process.





United States military jury - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


I find it completely unacceptable that servicemembers can be deprived of their liberty with such a low standard of justice.

The fact you take an oath to protect and defend a Constitution that doesn't even protect you is absured.

I did my time and I know there's a need for order in the military.

But to deprivation of due process is not the way we should go in a free society.
I guess it's important to understand the reasons behind the differences first.
 

Ductus_Exemplo

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The differences are the penalties; when convicted in a SPCM, the maximum prison sentence is 1 year, 3 months hard labor, or forfeiture of pay exceeding two-thirds pay per month, or any forfeiture of pay for more than 1 year. I would double check the source in which you are referring too:

Members are allowed a single vote toward a verdict, via a secret ballot. While a civilian court requires a unanimous vote among the jury to convict the defendant, a guilty verdict may be arrived at if two-thirds of the members vote the accused guilty of any charges.

In addition to swiftly arriving at verdicts, military trials never produce a hung jury. -WIKIPEDIA

I am not to conviced about this article as it does not accurately describe the burdens of proof. The burdens of proof trancends the civilian court system to the military court system. For instance, in a General Court Martial, and you are dealing with a felony offense such as rape, you need "beyond a reasonable doubt". However, if your being tried for a misdemeanor offense in a SPCM, you the court may only need "clear and convincing evidence". Furthermore, on lesser offenses you may only need "preponderance of the evidence", which plainly means "More than likely the accused did it". Military members are afforded all rights under the constitution.

In fact, military members enjoy certain privileges, if you are apprehended on a military installation or anywhere for that matter and you are an active duty member of the military, you will not only be afforded Miranda rights, you will also be afforded Article 31B rights under the UCMJ. Another privilege is that any member of the military, regardless of rank, may REFUSE a Summary Court Martial or an NJP for ANY reason.

As a member of the armed forces, and I am sure you know all to well, we are held to a higher standard than the rest. That is why we still have officers and SNCOs getting court martialed under Art. 134 for adultery. The jurisdiction of the UCMJ has no geographical boundaries, which is why Navy NCIS, CID, and soon USMC MPs hold federal credentials (albeit the USMC MP credentials are different). But we still are afforded all the constitutional rights that civilians enjoy.
 
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