Are Military Defendants Eligible for Bail?

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Interviewer: Is there such a thing as bail or bond for military cases or no?

Chris: If you’re ordered into pretrial confinement, there are several steps that have to happen before you can be confined. For example, let’s say the military police or the office of special investigation or the criminal investigation services arrests you.

A Hearing Commences Prior to Military Personnel Being Placed in Confinement

Let’s say they put you in confinement. Once you going to confinement, you have to have a confinement hearing and, at the confinement hearing, the confinement officer has to make a determination whether several factors are met.

One factor is if restraint is necessary, is it the least restrictive method available? Another consideration is whether or not other less intrusive means have been used and whether or not this restraint is going to prevent you from further criminal conduct. Generally, most individuals are not in pretrial confinement before trial.

Interviewer: They’ll be arrested and then released back to active service or what will happen?

When Military Personnel Are Under Criminal Suspicion, They Will Be Read Their Article 31 Rights

Chris: Generally, if you’re under investigation, you may never have been arrested to begin with. Often times, you are called into the investigator’s office and the first time that you hear that they suspect you of a crime is when they read you your Article 31 rights, which are your Miranda rights.

When they do that, that’s the first time you hear it and, at that point, you’re interrogated. They may not even put you into confinement after that. You may never be arrested. During the interrogation, you may spill your guts to investigators, without counsel, although you’ve been asked if you need one, which you do, but often times, an individual doesn’t ask for counsel.

Then, you are free to go and you go into the custody of your chain of command and released back to where you are serving.

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