UCMJ Article 112a

UCMJ Article 108

Military Property of the United States – Loss, Damage, Destruction, or Wrongful Disposition


The MCM states a service member may be prosecuted for an Article 108 (Military Property of the United States – Loss, Damage, Destruction, or Wrongful Disposition) if, without proper authority, they:

  1. sells or otherwise disposes of;
  2. willfully or through neglect damages, destroys, or loses; or
  3. willfully or through neglect suffers to be lost, damaged, destroyed, sold, or wrongfully disposed of; any military property of the United States.

In order to be prosecuted for selling or otherwise disposing of military property, the prosecution must demonstrate:

  1. the accused sold or otherwise disposed of certain property (which was a firearm or explosive);
  2. the sale or disposition was without proper authority;
  3. the property was military property of the United States; and
  4. the property was of a certain value.

Charges of damaging, destroying, or losing military property, may be applicable if it can be proven that:

  1. the accused, without proper authority, damaged or destroyed certain property in a certain way, or lost certain property;
  2. the property was military property of the United States;
  3. the damage, destruction, or loss was willfully caused by the accused or was the result of neglect by the accused; and
  4. the property was of a certain value or the damage was of a certain amount.

Suffering military property to be lost, damaged, destroyed, sold, or wrongfully disposed of requires a demonstration proving:

  1. certain property (which was a firearm or explosive) was lost, damaged, destroyed, sold, or wrongfully disposed of;
  2. the property was military property of the United States;
  3. the loss, damage, destruction, sale, or wrongful disposition was suffered by the accused, without proper authority, through a certain omission of duty by the accused;
  4. the omission was willful or negligent; and
  5. the property was of a certain value or the damage was of a certain amount.

 

Understanding Article 108 (Military Property of the United States – Loss, damage, destruction, or wrongful disposition) of the UCMJ

The term military property refers to all property, real or personal, owned, held, or used by a branch of the United States armed forces. This is not to be confused with Government property. While all military property is Government property, not all Government property is military property. Merchandise sold in Service Exchange stores is not determined to be military property under Article 108.

For the purposes of Article 108, the term suffer is equated to the allowing or permitting of an action. The accused must have allowed something to happen to the property through negligence, recklessness, irresponsibility, or a willful and deliberate violation or intentional disregard of some specific law, regulation, or order.

Value and damage vary and is determined by calculating the amount of damage and the estimated or actual cost of repair by the Government agency normally employed in such work, or the cost of replacement, as shown by Government price lists or otherwise, whichever is less. In the case of loss, destruction, sale, or wrongful disposition, the value of the property controls the maximum punishment which may be adjudged. In the case of damage, the amount of damage controls.

While firearm is self-explanatory, the term explosive refers specifically to explosive materials and includes ammunition.

 

Maximum Possible Punishment for Violations of Article 108

The maximum possible punishment for those convicted of an Article 108 violation varies depending upon the action and the monetary value of the item and damages.

Selling or otherwise disposing of military property carries a maximum sentence of a bad-conduct discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 1 year if the value was $1,000 or less. If the value was more than $1,000, the punishment increases to a dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 10 years.

Through neglect damaging, destroying, or losing, or through neglect suffering to be lost, damaged, destroyed, sold, or wrongfully disposed of, military property carries a sentence of confinement for 6 months, and forfeiture of two-thirds pay per month for 6 months if the value or damage was determined to be $1,000 or less. If the value or damage exceeds $1,000 the punishment is increased to a bad conduct discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 1 year.

Willfully damaging, destroying, or losing, or willfully suffering to be lost, damaged, destroyed, sold, or wrongfully disposed of, military property results in a maximum possible punishment of a bad-conduct discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 1 year for a value or damage calculated to be $1,000 or less. If the value or damages exceed $1,000, the maximum possible punishment is increased to a dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 10 years.

 

How do you defend against Article 108 Military Property of the United States – Loss, Damage, Destruction, or Wrongful Disposition charges?

When you are facing the combined resources of the military as well as the current cultural climate, you need to be prepared to defend your career and your freedom. Crisp and Associates, LLC has a team of experienced trial attorneys who have won these cases. This team includes the firm’s founder, Jonathan Crisp, a highly respected former Army JAG with over 17 years of experience in military law and a sought-after speaker and lecturer on military law. In 2015 the firm recruited R. Davis Younts, a former prosecutor who was the number one rated Senior Defense Counsel in the Air Force and has taught at the Army and Air Force JAG Schools and successfully achieved acquittals in multiple rape, sexual assault, and sexual contact cases in courts-martial in multiple branches of the service.

If you or someone you know is facing Article 108 charges for Military Property of the United States – Loss, Damage, Destruction, or Wrongful Disposition, you need to speak with a Military defense attorney right away. Please call Crisp and Associates Military at 888-347-1514 for a free consultation.

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