UCMJ Article 128a
The Manual for Courts-Martial states any service member may be prosecuted if they, with intent to injure, disfigure, or disable, inflicts upon the person of another an injury which:
- seriously disfigures his person by any mutilation thereof;
- destroys or disables any member or organ of his body; or
- seriously diminishes his physical vigor by the injury of any member or organ.
In order to be convicted of maiming, the prosecution must demonstrate that:
- the accused inflicted a certain injury upon a certain person;
- this injury seriously disfigured the person’s body, destroyed or disabled an organ or member, or seriously diminished the person’s physical vigor by the injury to an organ or member; and
- the accused inflicted this injury with an intent to cause some injury to a person.
Understanding Article 128a (Maiming) of the UCMJ
It is maiming to put out a person’s eye, to cut off a hand, foot, or finger, or to knock out a tooth, as these injuries destroy or disable those members or organs. It is also maiming to injure an internal organ so as to seriously diminish the physical vigor of a person. Likewise, it is maiming to cut off an ear or to scar a face with acid, as these injuries seriously disfigure a person. A disfigurement need not mutilate any entire member to come within the article, or be of any particular type, but must be such as to impair perceptibly and materially the victim’s comeliness. The disfigurement, diminishment of vigor, or destruction or disablement of any member or organ must be a serious injury of a substantially permanent nature. However, the offense is complete if such an injury is inflicted even though there is a possibility that the victim may eventually recover the use of the member or organ, or that the disfigurement may be cured by surgery.
To prove the offense, it is not necessary to prove the specific means by which the injury was inflicted. However, such evidence may be considered on the question of intent. Maiming requires a specific intent to injure generally but not a specific intent to maim. Thus, one commits the offense who intends only a slight injury, if in fact there is infliction of an injury of the type specified in this article. Infliction of the type of injuries specified in this article upon the person of another may support an inference of the intent to injure, disfigure, or disable.
Maximum Possible Punishment for Violations of Article 128a
Service members convicted of a violation of Article 128a face a maximum possible punishment of a dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 20 years.
How do you defend against Article 128a Maiming 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, with more than 75 years of combined experience, who have won these types of cases. This team includes the firm’s founder, Jonathan Crisp, a highly respected and sought-after attorney, speaker, and lecturer, who has served in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps (JAG) since 1998 and entered private practice in 2007.
If you, or someone you know, is facing Article 128a charges for Maiming, you need to speak with a Military defense attorney right away. We understand what is at risk, and we know how to protect your career, your freedom, and your future. Please call Crisp and Associates Military at 888-258-1653 for a free consultation.
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