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Rs 29:132 Article 32. Preliminary Hearing

§132. Article 32. Preliminary hearing

A. Preliminary Hearing Required.

(1) No charge or specification may be referred to a general court-martial for trial until

completion of a preliminary hearing, unless such hearing is waived by the accused.

(2) The purpose of the preliminary hearing shall be limited to the following:

(a) determining whether there is probable cause to believe an offense has been

committed and the accused committed the offense;

(b) determining whether the convening authority has court-martial jurisdiction over

the offense and the accused;

(c) considering the form of the charges; and

(d) recommending the disposition that should be made of the case.

B. Hearing officer. (1) A preliminary hearing conducted pursuant to Subsection A of

this Section shall be conducted by an impartial judge advocate certified under Article 27(B)

of this code whenever practicable or, in exceptional circumstances in which the interests of

justice warrant, by an impartial hearing officer who is not a judge advocate. If the hearing

officer is not a judge advocate, a judge advocate certified under Article 27(B) shall be

available to provide legal advice to the hearing officer.

(2) Whenever practicable, the judge advocate or other hearing officer detailed to

conduct a preliminary hearing shall be equal to or senior in grade to the military counsel

detailed to represent the accused or the government at a preliminary hearing.

C. Report of results. At the conclusion of a preliminary hearing conducted pursuant

to Subsection A of this Section, the judge advocate or other officer that conducted the

preliminary hearing shall prepare a report that addresses the matters specified in Paragraph

(A)(2) and Subsection F of this Section.

D. Rights of accused and victim. (1)The accused shall be advised of the charges

against him and of his right to be represented by counsel at a preliminary hearing conducted

pursuant to Subsection A of this Section. The accused has the right to be represented at the

preliminary hearing as provided in Article 38 of this Code and in regulations prescribed

under that Article.

(2) The accused may cross-examine witnesses who testify at the preliminary hearing

and present additional evidence in defense and mitigation, relevant to the limited purposes

of the hearing, as provided for in Paragraph (4) of this Subsection and Paragraph (A)(2) of

this Section.

(3) A victim may not be required to testify at a preliminary hearing. A victim who

declines to testify shall be deemed to be not available for purposes of a preliminary hearing.

(4) The presentation of evidence and examination, including cross-examination, of

witnesses at a preliminary hearing shall be limited to the matters relevant to the limited

purpose of the hearing, as provided in Paragraph (A)(2) of this Section.

E. Recording of preliminary hearing. A preliminary hearing under Subsection A of

this Section shall be recorded by a suitable recording device. The victim may request the

recording and shall have access to the recording as prescribed by the Manual for


F. Effect of evidence of uncharged offense. If evidence adduced in a preliminary

hearing conducted pursuant to Subsection A of this Section indicates that the accused

committed an uncharged offense, the hearing officer may consider the subject matter of that

offense without the accused having first been charged with the offense if all of the following

occur in that the accused:

(1) Is present at the preliminary hearing.

(2) Is informed of the nature of each uncharged offense considered.

(3) Is afforded the opportunities for representation, cross-examination, and

presentation consistent with Subsection D of this Section.

G. Effect of violation. The requirements of this Section are binding on all persons

administering this Chapter, but failure to follow the requirement does not constitute

jurisdictional error.

H. Victim defined. For purposes of this Section, "victim" shall mean a person who:

(1) is alleged to have suffered a direct physical, emotional, or pecuniary harm as a

result of the matters set forth in a charge or specification being considered; and

(2) is named in one of the specifications.

Acts 1974, No. 621, §1; Acts 2017, No. 75, §1, eff. June 8, 2017.

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Local Government
John Bel Edwards
John Bel Edwards
January 11, 2016 -
900 North 3rd Street, Baton Rouge, LA, 70802