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January 2022
Tim Bilecki

Defense Clears Navy Petty Officer of False Sex Assault Claims

Sexual Assault
Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina
Navy Petty Officer – E-4
No court martial charges preferred. No adverse administrative action taken.

Winston Churchill once famously said, “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” So it is with this case example, but thankfully for this Navy Petty Officer, the truth had an ally on its side.

This Petty Officer was being falsely accused of sexual assault by a fellow Sailor and was facing a potential court martial. A conviction under the UCMJ would have been devastating for this Petty Officer, and the fact that they were false would have made the injustice more of a travesty.

Military defense lawyer for UCMJ Article 120 sexual assault, Tim Bilecki, was retained early in the process, and this gave the defense team enough time to conduct their own investigation. Bilecki’s team interviewed witnesses that the prosecution would have preferred to be left alone. Based on our extensive experience, we knew something wasn’t right.

Our investigation led to the discovery that the alleged victim had falsified her statement. As such, Bilecki was successful in seeing that the charges were dropped before they could ever be preferred. After all, the best court martial is the one that never happens because the truth caught up to the lie.

You simply cannot rely on military investigators to uncover the truth because they have no incentive to do so. They rely on their high prosecution rates to scare other service members into compliance. If they use an innocent person or a guilty person to induce that fear, it still works the same.

There is a vigorous campaign to root out sexual assault from the military ranks, and commands are under extensive pressure from both the Pentagon and elected officials to make it happen quickly. Retaining experienced legal counsel who is not beholden to the military justice system may be key to clearing your name and proving your innocence.

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