Bizarre Ways to Violate the UCMJ

| March 21, 2022

SOFREP published an article highlighting a few, little-known ways to violate the UCMJ…

The Most Bizarre Ways To Violate The Uniform Code Of Military Justice

Drinking liquor with prisoners

Appendix 2, 896. Art. 96, B states that “Any person subject to this chapter who unlawfully drinks any alcoholic beverage with a prisoner shall be punished as a court-martial may direct,” which was we supposed would be an obvious thing. I mean, if you are guarding prisoners you really shouldn’t be drinking on duty or drinking with the prisoners you are guarding.  We don’t know what incident inspired this addition to the UCMJ, but it must have been pretty legendary.

In this case, the maximum punishment would be three months of confinement and forfeiture of two-thirds pay per month for three months.


If you’re struggling to keep up and tend to fall behind or lose your way during marches or runs, then you might be in for legal trouble. As written by Bilecki Law Group, “A service member who becomes separated from his organizational unit during a march, a training exercise, or military maneuver, is at risk of being accused and convicted of “straggling” under Article 134 of the UCMJ. Straggling breaks down the military’s organizational structures, making them susceptible to enemy attacks.”

While stragglers were often just told to hurry up and motivated to march toward their destination by their non-commissioned officers, this could result in confinement for three months and forfeiture of two-thirds pay per month for three months. So to sum it up, don’t get left behind.

To this could be added the grave offense of “malingering” which involved feigning injury or illness to avoid duty or some other unpleasant task.

Jumping Into The Water

This one may seem crazy but it actually has some reasoning behind it.  Life aboard ship can be dull sometimes and it’s easy to imagine sailor A saying to sailor B, “I’ll bet you $5 you won’t jump from the radar mast into the water.  Sailor B takes the bet climbs the 80ft mast and jumps.  The fall breaks both his legs and compresses three of the disks in his back.  Stunts like these were once common enough to require a general addition under Article 143 which covers “all neglects and disorders which are adverse to the discipline and good order.”

We’ve learned many more ways to violate the UCMJ from the “perps” in the Stolen Valor community.

  • Punching your Commanding Officer when he orders you to kill women and children.
  • Using unconventional, non-issued weapons such as piano wire to strangle the enemy
  • Leaving a man behind – common when you are the last of your unit to survive an ambush
  • Talking about secret, classified missions on Facebook or Twitter
  • Violation of the Black Ops community code of “take it to the grave” secrets
  • Refusing an awarded medal because your buddies were worse off than you – this falls under being out of uniform
  • Disobeying a direct “Hold Your Fire” order and charging that enemy machine gun nest on your own
  • List goes on…

Jumping in the water – amateur hour.


Category: "Teh Stoopid", Stolen Valor

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Swim call med 1985: Myself and few other knuckleheads decided to jump for the 0-4 level instead of the main deck like chumps. Let me tell you…it was a mistake, BIG MISTAKE. You slap your feet, get a saltwater enema, and you go down so far you think you’re going to drown. They quickly put a stop to it. Just a “Hey, assholes. The main deck or nothing” from 1st Div BMC.

O4 level.png

Appendix 2, 896. Art. 96, B states that “Any person subject to this chapter who unlawfully drinks any alcoholic beverage with a prisoner shall be punished as a court-martial may direct”

So huffing floor wax wit’m is gtg? Asking for a TAH community member.

Last edited 3 months ago by Roh-Dog

Huffing may be allowed -Dog, but making them ride the buffer is still verboten…’specially if either party is under the influence of floor wax. Pulling them on a blanket is allowed but only if all parties are wearing a PT Belt.

Daisy Cutter

Sniffing magic markers was a problem in the PowerPoint Commando community. Lots of dry, spent markers was frustrating when the upper brass would reach for one.

jeff LPH 3 63-66

I remember the blanket pull with the other 4 Engineering Div. compartment cleaners after waxing down the deck.


But the “Buffer Rodeo” is a time honored tradition in the barracks!


Until the buffer motor burns out.
Oops! “Don’t know what happened, Sergeant! It just stopped”.


But, hey, he’s got his PT belt on for safety!

Last edited 3 months ago by Anonymous

The drinking with prisoners or giving prisoners liquor are very, very old going all the way back to original State Criminal Codes in many states. Back in the early days up till the 1890s there were very few ways to get high. Drinking alcohol was pretty much it for the vast majority of people in the US. Drunk criminals are very difficult to deal with and so this was forbidden.

Until the last century incarceration was very rare. Because of the conditions of prisons and jails back then often times family, friends and church groups would bring the prisoner their food.

As trade opened up and more drugs were imported or developed that changed things quite a bit and most criminals now have shifted away from alcohol and tend to gravitate more towards stimulants and psychoactives.


My grandparents grew up in a rural small town. Grandpa’s best friend as a kid was the police chief’s kid. The chief and his family lived at the police department, with the jail. The chief’s wife did the cooking and cleaning for the prisoners. This would have been Great Depression-era, so not that long ago.


Beg to differ, Steve. I got paid to jump into the water.

USMC Steve

There is an Article 143?


I always thought of ‘threat to good order and discipline’ as a challenge to be taken professionally and vigilantly.

Extra Duty just means you got caught.


Don’t you mean extra ‘training’?


I see it now. The punitive articles end at 134.
Dass a typoo

USMC Steve

Roger that. I have been out since 1998 and thought they might have added some stuff since then.


I think one of the most bizarre ways to get a court marital is to predict a surprise air attack by the Imperial Japanese on Pearl Harbor that destroys much of the Pacific fleet and then criticize the Presidential administration for not preparing for such an event.

Hack Stone

Or calling out the “Commander in Chief” for his pathetic handling of withdrawing from a 3rd world shit hole and leaving billions of dollars of military equipment for the enemy.

Daisy Cutter

Or cutting off those pesky “TOP SECRET” headings on emails and firing them off, then claiming that you never emailed any Top Secret documents.

RGR 4-78

Different spanks for different skanks.


Technically I think we are talking about a Federal Prosecution. Worst mistake Trump ever made in not following through with that one IMO.


Hey, everyone in my company in boot camp had to jump into the water, to escape the burning deck and ammo exploding in the ammo locker.


Things were tough back in the days of wooden decks.

Slick Goodlin

More UCMJ legends:
As a young soldier in a Holding Company at Fort Benning in 1973, we were tasked with escorting Stockade prisoners on Post to appointments, lawyer, medical etc.
One wag amoung us stated, “You know, if your prisoner escapes, you have to serve out the rest if his sentence!”
I sensed B.S., but I’m sure there are some guys there who belive it to this day.

Hack Stone

Hack Stone was charged with failure to obey an illegal order when he refused to light up an orphanage full of blind nuns and puppies with his combination flamethrower/MRE heater. Charges were thrown out at the court martial when Defense Attorney Daniel Bernath successfully argued that if Hack Stone had expended all of his fuel burning down the orphanage, the Commanding Officer would not be able to host the post invasion wienee roast and s’mores.

Daisy Cutter

Reading this gives me the same feeling when I scan the tabloid headlines at the supermarket checkout — it all makes sense to me now.

Last edited 3 months ago by Daisy Cutter

Comfort your PTS of D that you did the right thing. Charlie Don’t Surf!

Last edited 3 months ago by 5JC

Got hit with sodomy in 2009 under 134. Was interesting to see that written out in the charge statement the Smaj showed me.


Isn’t the first example of an offense part of the plot of The Last Detail?


Yep. The “escotree” incurred the wrath of the base CO’s wife.

Green Thumb

Wonder what the world’s fourth most dangerous man thinks on this subject?

The one and only Stephen Cio “Ranger” Burrell!

RGR 4-78

Fantasy at its worst.

Hack Stone

Hack came across a blog of his a few months back. He seems to have an issue with people, Hack among them, questioning his status as fourth most hygienically challenged man in thw world. Still looking, but found this nugget.


Thanks for the link. I was unaware of CPT Burrell’s amazing story of daring do. Who knew the Phoenix program in the Viet of the Nam was conducted by the “Fifth Infantry.” I thought it was run by MACV-SOG. One of my NCO’s that worked in it must have been lying to me and forged his Form 20 with that “Studies and Observation Group” entry in the assignments section.


Does he go up-river on a PBR to kill a renegade Colonel while locals hack up a water buffalo for no reason there, too? Just wondering…


Yup, and in the process, he is captured by a cruel NVA detachment and forced to play Russian roulette.

Green Thumb

Probably not.

Stephen Cio “Ranger” Burrell is probably to busy with his next less-than-bestselling novel sequel: “Next Weekend with Reginald”.

Hack Stone

Rita Sweeps The Women’s Swim Competition.

Green Thumb


Old “Ranger” Burrell is an old school TAH turd.

He was outed years past.

Lots of threats of death and how his gardening tools were going to make it happen.

I was always under the assumption that it was after his “Weekend with Rick”.

A Proud Infidel®™️

Zero followers, I bet he still blows winos behind bus stops for spare change.


Is Walter Mitty his cover identity?

Buckeye Jim

Is “wrongful cohabitation” still on the books? It was in the early 70s. Asking for a friend.


No, they dropped it around the same time the military started recognizing same sex marriages. It was never illegal to live with another person anyway. It was illegal to live with person and put yourselves out as married when you were not.


I was cohabiting with my Army nurse in the early 70’s. What makes it “wrongful?” Was there something illegal about an O-3 shacked up with an O-1? And no, she wasn’t a subordinate. Back in those days, we didn’t have women in a SF battalion.

Hack Stone

Sit right back and you’ll a tale, a tale of a fateful working part. The time and place was June 1982, 29 Stumps. Hack Stone was waiting for his Radio Fundamentals Class to start. About 15 of us were picked for a working party to go out to Camp Wilson and build A Frames for the Marines participating in CAX. 

The routine was for us to get on the truck on the C&E Grinder, then ride about 45 minutes out to Camp Wilson and build the A Frames. 11:00 get back on the truck, spend 45 minutes going back to mainside, eat lunch, get back on the truck for another 45 minute ride out to Camp Wilson, work until 16:00, then another 45 minutes back to mainside.

Hack Stone

Two of the individuals, Lewis and Holstein, were selected to clean up the Police Lot. That took all of about 90 minutes, so the Marine running the Police Lot told them to hang out at the Beer Hall and shoot some pole. So that is what they did. They missed the 11:00 ride back for lunch. At the end of the day, they got on the truck with everyone else. End of story.

Not so fast! The C&E Lance Corporal in charge of the working party, let’s call him Frank Burns, went whining to the Staff Sergeant about them not being on the truck. The Staff Sergeant had a hard on for Lewis and Holstein, and not in a good way. He tells Lance Corporal Frank Burns to charge them with Article 87. For those not in the know, Article 87 is Missing Military Movement.

Hack Stone

A few weeks later is the day of reckoning. Hack Stone is called as a witness by the defense. As were about 8 other Marines. So now this gaggle of Marines are standing outside of the Alpha Company Commander’s office. The 1st Sergeant tells the witnesses that we will march in and stand at attention along the row of windows. The accused will march in, stand at attention in front of the Company Commander, and report. 

We enter, Lewis and Holstein report, and the 1st Sergeant says “PFC Holstein, PFC Lewis, you stand accused of Article 87, Missing Military Movement. How do you plead?” Lewis says “Man this is bullshit!” The 1stSergeant says “You better put some “sirs” in there.” Holstein says “Sir, this is bullshit!” Muffled laughter is contained by the witnesses.

Hack Stone

The first witness, Lance Corporal Frank Burns, gives his whiney testimony how they weren’t there when the truck came for the lunch run. The Captain rolls his eyes. He turns to the next witness, one PFC Hack Stone. The Captain asks PFC Stone for his version. “Sir, when we got to Camp Wilson, Lewis and Holstein were sent a separate working party. The truck came at 11:00, we went back to mainside for lunch, came back, and at he end of the day, everyone got on the truck and returned to mainside.”

Hack Stone

The Captain is wondering why he is spending his Friday afternoon listening to this shit. He turns to Lance Corporal Frank Burns. “Lance Corporal Burns, you were in charge of this working party, correct?” Burns says “Yes, sir.” Lance Corporal Burns, did you tell these two Marines to beat the rally point at 11:00 for the lunch run?” Burns starts to turn pale. “No, sir.” The Captain then says “So, these two Marines did not have the opportunity for chow because you didn’t do your job? Maybe you should be charged with Dereliction of Duty.” Game over!!! That was the greatest Article 15 Hack Stone ever participated in. 

USMC Steve

God love those officers with common sense. And as I recall 29 Stumps they were few and far between in that hole.

A Proud Infidel®™

I remember seeing an Army Unit cursed with a CO who thought that passing out Article 15’s like Shriners do candy at a parade would be beneficial to the Unit.


“Alphatraz” would it be? An ADA battery?

Hack Stone

Sounds like Charlie Company 3rd Amtracks in circa 1984. Best way to leave as a Corporal in that Company was to check in a Sergeant.


I can recall a certain unit that probably would have benefited from that. The might 69th Signal Company (aka “The Dawg Pound”) in the early 90’s. I think they might still have one or two former members in prison.


During Wednesday ‘(Iron) Soldier Time’ training during a spate of ‘issues’ I was given the opportunity to ‘Train whatever the hell you want SSG.’ One afternoon I decided to go through all of the articles of the UCMJ with my squad. You can get through all the articles in one 5 hour block and for my Joes I think it was worth more than another afternoon of cleaning our weapons, or learning how to set up a Claymore again.


I remember the one about guarding prisoners- if you let him escape, you do his time; and if you shoot an escaping prisoner, you will be transferred to another post of your choice. Don’t know if it was true. BTW, what was “Failure to Repair”?

USMC Steve

It is specific to motor T dudes and dudettes.

Green Thumb

Three dudes being nude in the line for weapon turn in to the Arms room.

Green Thumb

Getting loaded at a college bar and trying to climb the White House fence to impress some chicks.

Green Thumb

Getting loaded and hijacking a base golf cart and doing some “donoughts” on the CG’ yard.

And then running and falling into the river.

A Proud Infidel®™

A Male Soldier having his “Gun” hanging out during Uniform Inspection.

Green Thumb


I like it!

Always looking for orginal thinhing and artistic premise.