Navy Results of Trial for September 2016 - 86% of Cases Guilty Pleas and 50% Acquittal Rate in Contested Sexual Assault Cases
I'm making it a point to publish assessments of the results of trial across branches on a monthly basis.
The Navy publishes it's results here:
Our firm did not try any Navy cases in September. Mr. Conway did win an administrative separation board at Naval Air Station Oceana with a 3-0 finding of no misconduct in a drug case. But, we did not have any Navy Courts-martial.
Bottom line, the Navy is dealing as usual. There were 23 courts-martial Navy wide. Three were contested cases (13%). One contested case resulted in a not guilty verdict. The other 20 cases (86%) were guilty pleas.
Of the three contested cases, two involved sexual assault. A chief got 6 years and an E-5 was acquitted. There was also a guilty finding in a sexual abuse of a child case, but the sentence was 8 months. If you take that case out, there was still a 50% acquittal rate in sexual assault jury trials.
My assessment - continually - is that the results tend to be more favorable when you go to trial. Each case stands alone - it's a case-by-case basis. But, the broader system-wide numbers are still favorable for an accused.
In the Navy District of Washington there were two General Courts-martial and one Special Court.
All three cases were guilty pleas. Two involved child pornography and had sentences at 18 months and 6 years. The other was a larceny case with 45 days confinement.
Navy Region Mid-Atlantic is one of the busier Naval jurisdictions. We have a Norfolk office. They had 4 General Courts-martial. There were two plea agreements - an adultery type case with 89 days confinement and an involuntarily manslaughter case with 42 months confinement. A CPO was found guilty of sexual assault and sentenced to 6 years by a panel. A panel gave a CPO 8 months for sexual abuse of a child and indecent exposure.
In the Navy Region Southeast there was one General Court and one Special Court. In a judge alone General Court-martial, a Sailor was found guilty of sexual assault and given an 18 month sentence. A guilty plea at a Special Court for larceny and false official statement resulted in a 6 month sentence.
Navy Region Northwest had 2 General Courts and 5 Special Courts. Both General Courts were guilty pleas. One General Court was a indecent recording and child pornography case with a 48 month cap. Another involved wrongful wearing of insignia with a 2 month sentence.
All 5 Special Courts were guilty pleas.
Navy Region Southwest had 5 guilty pleas at Special Courts.
In Navy Region Europe a Sailor stood trial for sexual assault at a General Court-martial and a panel found him not guilty.