How Many Members Sit On a Court-Martial Panel?

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Each of the three courts-martial are composed of a different number of members. With a general court-martial, you have to have a minimum of at least five members, if you choose to be tried by a court composed of members and not judge alone. With a special court-martial there has to be a minimum of at least three members. And again, you have that option of choosing military judge alone, if that’s what you decide.

For the last type of court-martial, a summary court-martial (which is not a federal conviction), it looks more like and acts more like non-judicial punishment, or Article 15, captain’s mast. In that case, a summary court-martial is presided over not by military judge, but only one officer member, and that person is known as the summary court-martial officer. That person will rule upon evidentiary objections and motions that you make, will also decide if they find you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, and will be your sentencing authority as well.

For questions about courts-martial, contact the Law Office of Jocelyn C. Stewart at 1-888-252-0927.

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