Testifying In Earlier Hearings Can Be Risky

Posted by Ernesto Gapasin | Feb 22, 2023 | 0 Comments

You may be the subject of a pending military investigation.  When you are, we know that life seems to come to a standstill.  You can't get promoted, you can't ETS, and you can't move on to your next duty assignment.  What makes things even worse is when you are facing other legal issues in State Court.  I frequently have clients who are dealing with other legal issues outside of the pending military investigation.  Usually, these clients are dealing with the possible issuance of a Restraining Order filed by a spouse, ex-spouse or girlfriend.  Another common legal issue facing clients during a pending military investigation involve child custody issues.  For both of these issues, it's only natural for the client to want to take the stand in State Court and defend themselves.  They want to prevent a Restraining Order from appearing on their record, or they want to be able to see their kids.  However, it can be risky to give testimony in a State Court proceeding before the military investigation is complete.  The testimony that you give may be that statement or include those admissions that result in the military deciding to move forward with prosecuting your case.  JAG can get copies of the transcripts or the audio recording of the hearing and use your statements as the basis for preferring charges against you.

Before testifying in State Court, you need to speak with your court-martial lawyer to help you weigh the pros and cons of testifying in the first place, and whether or not it could lead to preferred charges in a court-martial.

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Ernesto Gapasin



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