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Searching 2017-2018 Session

The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 20 : Internal Security and Public Safety

Chapter 039 : COURTS-MARTIAL


(Cite as: 20 V.S.A. § 942a)
  • § 942a. Structure of courts-martial

    (a) General court-martial. A general court-martial of the Vermont national guard shall be convened only by order of the governor. A general court-martial may try any person subject to the military code of Vermont for a crime made punishable by the military laws of the United States and the state, and may impose fines not exceeding $200.00, sentence forfeiture of pay and allowances, reprimand, dismiss or dishonorably discharge from the service and reduce noncommissioned officers in rank. Any two or more punishments may be combined in the sentence imposed by the court. The procedure by which a general court-martial shall function in view of the state's lack of manpower, and shortage of places of confinement and finances, shall be in compliance with reasonable rules and regulations, adjusted to the peculiar characteristics of the state. The rules and regulations shall be formulated by the adjutant general, drafted by the staff judge advocate and approved by the governor.

    (b) Special court-martial. The adjutant general or the commanding officer of a battalion or similar unit may appoint a special court-martial but the special court-martial may in any case be appointed by superior authority when it considers the appointment desirable. A special court-martial may try any person subject to the military code of Vermont, except a commissioned or warrant officer, for any crime of a purely military nature made punishable as such by military law of the United States or the state. A special court-martial has the same powers of punishment as a general court-martial, except that a fine may not exceed $100.00.

    (c) Summary court-martial. The commanding officer of a unit may appoint a summary court to consist of one officer who may administer oaths and may try enlisted men for breach of discipline and for minor violations of a military regulation governing the unit. The court, when satisfied of the guilt of the soldier, may fine him not exceeding $25.00 for any single offense, sentence to a reduction in rank, and declare not in excess of one month's forfeiture of pay and allowances. The proceedings shall be informal.

    (d) Appeal from convictions. Any appeal from the sentence of a court-martial by the defendant shall be taken to the adjutant general. The defendant shall file written notice of appeal within 30 days of the court's finding of guilty. The adjutant general with the assistance of the staff judge advocate shall review all questions of law and fact. The final decision in all appeals from the special and summary courts-martial are with the adjutant general. An appeal from the general court-martial conviction shall be reviewed by the adjutant general as provided in this subsection. However the defendant, within 60 days after being served with the written decision of the adjutant general, affirming in whole or in part the conviction, may appeal to the governor, whose decision is final. (Added 1973, No. 223 (Adj. Sess.), § 13, eff. April 4, 1974.)