I think it is safe to say that no cadet plans to start off their military career with a court martial. Whereas Cadets at West Point are subject to their own unique disciplinary code, they are also subject to the UCMJ the same as any other member of the United States Armed Services. This misconduct can lead to a formal court martial or a series of misconduct hearings that afford you different aspects of due process. What is important to note is that you can have an experienced military defense attorney involved, regardless of what you may have heard. Cadet cases that do not rise to the level of a court martial are typically disposed of with an Honor Code Investigative Hearing under AR 210-26, para 6-16, a Cadet Disciplinary Case under AR 210-26, para 6-17, or a Misconduct Hearings under USMA 1-10. A misconduct can result in separation from West Point along with a recoupment of tuition, which could exceed $200,000. During a formal court martial or formal misconduct hearing, you can have an attorney represent you throughout the process, from initial investigation to trial or misconduct hearing. At all other proceedings, you must represent yourself, but you can have an experienced attorney advise and prepare you to do so. What you cannot do, must not do, is expect mercy from the military justice system. That’s because you will find out quickly in your military career that the military justice system does not exist for the purpose of pursuing justice. Rather, it exists to maintain military order and discipline. For that to work, they have to make a public example out of someone and if you let them, they will make that example out of you. You wanted to become an officer so that you could use that system to lead some of the finest men and women on Earth. Yet, if you are facing court martial or other misconduct hearings at West Point, that same system will bear down and crush you. You have to fight back as it is your only option. Thankfully, West Point has a gallant history of men and women who know how to fight.