The military jury trial is not at all similar to what we see in civilian
life. The jurors in the military are called “court members”
and they are all military personnel. In a General Court-Martial, there
must be at least 5 members; in a Special Court-Martial, there must be
at least 3 members. All members must be commissioned or warrant officers.
If the accused is an enlisted person, the accused has the right to request
that the composition of the court members include at least 1/3 enlisted
members, which if so requested, must be senior to the accused and cannot
come from the immediate command of the accused. In order for a finding
of guilty on a charge, at least 2/3 of the members must vote to convict
– so if there are 9 members on the panel, if 6 or more members vote
for a finding of Guilty, the verdict on that charge is Guilty; if less
than 6 members vote for Guilty, the verdict for that charge is Not Guilty.
If the accused is convicted on any charge, the members will also determine
the sentence. Again, a 2/3 concurrence is required for a sentence, except
if the sentence is for more than 10 years, which requires a 3/4 concurrence.
The accused can request trial by military judge in lieu of trial by jury.
At McCormack & McCormack, we are proud to defend the legal rights of
men and women who have risked their lives to defend the rights of every
day Americans. Call (888) 719-5899 to
schedule a case evaluation with our deidcated military defense attorney.