I am a 21-year-old female who proudly served as a police officer in the United States Marine Corps. I am writing you today to share with you the injustice that occurred while I served in the US military. The key concern here that I will properly highlight is the 6th Amendment right.
I was assaulted by my superior in December of 2016 and it took a whole year until my case went to trial in January of 2018. My cause for concern is the jury members who were a part of the court martial. The 6th Amendment guarantees the rights of criminal defendants, including the right to a public trial without unnecessary delay, the right to a lawyer, the right to an impartial jury, and the right to know who your accusers are and the nature of the charges and evidence against you. Granted I was not a defendant, but a victim,
I was made to tell my story for 7 hours to jury members who had no association with me. The jury members of my case were made up of all males who were not only affiliated with the defendant, but were also all a part of the defendant’s same battalion. This not only exemplifies the severe injustice of the trial, but the natural prejudice and bias that was ingrained in each jury member.
After the 7-day trial, it was time for a decision to be made and unfortunately, my assailant had all charges against him dropped and got out of the military honorably. This was an evil man who premeditated his acts, acted upon them, and committed assault by battery to a brand new PFC of the fleet.
It was daunting to undergo something so long and traumatizing.
I was let down that day. I was let down by my lawyers who could not prove beyond a reasonable doubt that I shouted “stop” and “no”, I was let down by the jury members who were the defendant’s mentors before the attack, and I was let down by the military’s judicial process.
Due to the emotional torment, I got out of the military medically with an honorable discharge. These types of proceedings that occur in the military is why so many victims find it so difficult to stand up and fight for what’s right. How can I have any hope for a military free of corruption when the victims who stand up do not get heard from unbiased jury members? I feel the 6th Amendment was not being taken into consideration by the United States Marine Corps and I do hope to share more details of my case and story that were not fairly met by justice.