Unlawful Force under Article 120 of the UCMJ

Facing charges of violating the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) can be daunting. Most service members don’t spend time studying the UCMJ when they are doing the work of defending our country. That means most don’t know what they’re up against if they’re accused of a violation. Understanding some of the terms defined by the UCMJ is the first step in preserving your rights.

What does “unlawful force” mean under Article 120 of the UCMJ?

Article 120 of the UCMJ governs violations related to rape and sexual assault. “Unlawful force” is an element, among others, used to identify whether a sexual act constitutes rape or sexual assault. It is a violation of code to use unlawful force against someone to commit a sexual act. It means using “force” – a weapon, violent physical strength, or physical harm that compels the victim into submission – in an unlawful way, or without a legal reason for doing so.

Fighting Back Against Article 120 Accusations

Just because you have been accused of a UCMJ violation does not necessarily mean you will be found guilty. Most service members do not understand that they have rights under the UCMJ. The attorneys at The Law Office of Garrison A. Wood will do everything in their power to defend your rights under the UCMJ. That starts with listening to your side of the story and forming a defense that proves your innocence. There are several ways to do so, and proving that you did not use unlawful force or that you had a lawful reason to use force is one of them.

Your First Move

If you are being tried for Article 120 violations, you should not face a court-martial without competent, aggressive legal representation at your side. The attorneys at The Law Office of Garrison A. Wood have successfully defended many Article 120 violations. They know how to navigate the court-martial system and the UCMJ so you can focus on getting your life and military career back. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case.

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