Each military service branch has its own law enforcement agency to investigate criminal allegations involving servicemembers. The U.S. Navy, for example, comprises several investigative arms, each dedicated to a different level of criminal gravity. The role of the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) is to handle serious criminal allegations, such as sexual assault, grand larceny, and murder. The Criminal Investigation Division (CID) is a division of naval investigations that deals primarily with lower-level criminal allegations or misdemeanor-type offenses, such as fraternization, adultery, and certain order violations.
Regardless of the service branch or the name of the investigative body, the purpose of these agencies is the same: to examine criminal allegations fully using all the investigative tools and resources of the federal government, and produce a written report for the Commanding Officer/General’s review.