U.S. v. Cadet, United States Air Force
February 4, 2019
Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colorado
Cadet is placed under investigation for over a year for allegedly sexually assaulting a fellow female cadet at the Academy. The complaining witness alleges that the Cadet had sexually assaulted her on two different occasions: once in the fall of 2016 and once in the fall of 2017. Cadet retains Mr. Robert Capovilla. The Convening Authority refers the case to a separation board because he felt that it would be an easy win for the prosecutor based on the lower burden of proof. Mr. Capovilla cross-examines the complaining witness for over 90-minutes and through the crucible of cross examination gets the complaining witness to admit that she lied to OSI, to the Government, and to her fellow cadets. During the examination, Mr. Capovilla forces the complaining witness to admit that she had completely forgotten about the first alleged sexual assault for nearly 24-months and only remembered being assaulted “after God refreshed her memory by giving her a nightmare” that just happened to coincide with an MRE 412 motion filed by Mr. Capovilla. She made this claim in response to Mr. Capovilla’s motion. Mr. Capovilla successfully cross-examines all of the complaining witnesses’ friends and is able to show that there was collusion among the witnesses to set up the accused Cadet. On close, Mr. Capovilla points out that the complaining witness changed her story on at least 15 different occasions and successfully argued that all of the forensic and scientific evidence supported the defense’s theory of the case. That theory was that this was a consensual sexual experience. Mr. Capovilla litigates this BOI for 4 days, cross-examines six (6) witnesses including a DNA expert. Mr. Capovilla files 3 motions and is able to successfully show that the Cadet is falsely accused.
RETAINED. NO UOTH. NO Jail time. Cadet is back in class with his old unit and is scheduled to graduate next year.