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U.S. v. E-4, United States Army

December 13, 2018

Fort Bragg, North Carolina

The Government accuses Specialist (SPC) of sexual assault. The SPC hires a civilian counsel from another law firm and that civilian counsel tells the SPC that he “has very little chance to win the case,” and that the best the SPC could hope for was to plead guilty. The Government denies the SPC’s offer to plead guilty and informs the SPC that they want at least 5 years confinement and want him to register as a sex offender.  The SPC retains Mr. Robert Capovilla. Mr. Capovilla immediately files a Motion for Expert Assistance and, upon thoroughly reviewing the evidence, discovers that there are missing text messages that may hold the key to the client’s innocence. Mr. Capovilla wins the Motion for Expert Assistance despite the Government’s objections and forces the Government to turn over all text messages sent by the alleged “victim” from the night in question.  Upon receiving the text messages, Mr. Capovilla is able to argue before the panel that the alleged “victim” lied to CID, the police, and the prosecutors and that her time line of events did not make sense. Mr. Capovilla successfully impeaches the alleged victim’s friends whom the Government called to incriminate the client.  Moreover, after an Article 39(a) motions hearing, Mr. Capovilla convinces the Military Judge to suppress any statements the alleged victim made to the Sex Assault Nurse Examiner (SANE) whom the Government called to prove the client was guilty. After three days of trial and several hours of motions, the Enlisted Panel rendered its findings

Case Result

FULL ACQUITTAL. NO Confinement, NO Discharge, NO Federal Conviction, NO Sex Offender Registration. The Specialist returned to his unit with plans of becoming a Special Operator.

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