Article 128, UCMJ, criminalizes the offenses of assault, aggravated assault, and assault with the intent to commit specified offenses. Under the UCMJ, the punishment for an assault increases based on the status of the victim. Accordingly, assaults upon a commissioned, warrant, noncommissioned, or petty officer, or assaults upon a sentinel or lookout, increase the potential maximum punishment. Certain aggravated assaults can result in years of confinement and a punitive discharge from the service.
Assault, particularly domestic assault, has become a hot button issue for the military. Domestic assault allegations (and convictions) can have a direct impact on whether a servicemember can remain of active duty due to the Lautenberg Amendment, which prevents any American citizen from owning, possessing, or transferring a firearm if convicted of a “misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.”
If you are under investigation for any type of assault or battery, immediately call our offices at (844) 334-5459 before you make any statements to your command and/or law enforcement.