Consequences of a DUI for Military Members

Art. 111 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ)1 makes operating a car, boat, or airplane while drunk a criminal act. This is just like a civilian charge for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol. Depending on your situation, you may face DUI charges under either the UCMJ or the civilian laws of the state you are in. The following is some additional information regarding the consequences of a conviction.

If you were arrested off base

In most cases civilian DUI charges will be filed if you were stopped and arrested off of the installation. Simply because your charges are in civilian court instead of military court, however, does not mean that you will not face military-related consequences for a conviction. Your commanding officer can issues administrative punishment against you, including the following:

  • Letter of reprimand2
  • Mandatory substance abuse evaluation and treatment
  • Corrective training
  • Revocation of leave privileges
  • Reduction in rank
  • Bar to reenlistment

These consequences are in addition to any civilian penalties you face, which may include jail time, probation, fines, and more.

If you are arrested on the military installation

If you are stopped and suspected of drunk driving while on base, the military prosecutor will likely charge you under the above UCMJ provision instead of having you face civilian charges. You may be subject to both administrative consequences by your commanding officer as well as court martial. Though you face charges through the military, however, the state can still opt to suspend or revoke your driver’s license.

Call a military lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your case

At the law firm of Gagne, Scherer & Associates, LLC, our experienced military criminal defense attorneys will present the best possible legal defense in your DUI case. Whether you are charged in military court or civilian court, we know how to handle your military case and can provide the highest quality of defense for military members. As former JAGs, we have a thorough understanding of the military court process. If you are facing any type of criminal charges, call our office today at 877-867-5247 to find out how we can assist you.