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Persons on Whom NJP may be Imposed - 14134_106
CHAPTER 5 NONJUDICIAL PUNISHMENT As an LN you will become extensively involved with  all  aspects  of  nonjudicial  punishment,  commonly called either NJP or mast. In this chapter we discuss duties and procedures required before, during, and after NJP  proceedings. Although  both  commanding  officers  (COs)  and officers in charge (OICs) can conduct mast, we will use only the abbreviation CO in this chapter. For a discus- sion on the differences between masts held by COs and OICs, see Article 15,  Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), and part V of the  Manual  for  Courts-Martial (MCM). The term nonjudicial  punishment  and  the  abbrevia- tion NJP are used interchangeably. They refer to certain limited punishments that can be awarded for minor disciplinary offenses by a CO to members of his or her command.  Nonjudicial  punishment  proceedings  are called captain’s mast or simply mast. Article 15 of the UCMJ, part V of the MCM, 1984, and part B of chapter 1 of the  Manual of the Judge Advocate  General  (JAGMAN) are the basic laws about nonjudicial  punishment  procedures.  The  legal  protec- tion afforded an individual subject to NJP proceedings is more complete than is the case for nonpunitive meas- ures,  but,  by  design,  is  less  extensive  than  for  courts- martial. NJP is not administrative and is nonadversarial in nature. When punishment is imposed it is not consid- ered a conviction, and when a case is dismissed it is not considered an acquittal. The word mast also is used to describe three differ- ent types of proceedings: request mast, meritorious mast, and disciplinary mast. Request mast is a hearing before  the  CO,  at  the  request  of  service  personnel,  for making requests, reports, statements, and for airing grievances. Meritorious mast is for the purpose of pub- licly  and  officially  commending  a  member  of  the  com- mand  for  noteworthy  performance  of  duty.  This  chapter discusses disciplinary mast. When we use the term mast, that is what is meant. Mast is a procedure where the CO may (1) inquire into the facts surrounding minor offenses allegedly committed  by  a  member  of  his  or  her  command, (2) afford the accused a hearing as to the offense(s), and (3) dispose of such charges by dismissing the charges, imposing punishment, or referring the case to a court- martial. NATURE AND REQUISITE OF NONJUDICIAL  PUNISHMENT Nonjudicial  punishment  is  a  disciplinary  measure more serious than administrative corrective measures, but  less  serious  than  trial  by  court-martial.  Nonjudicial punishment provides commanders with an essential and prompt  means  of  maintaining  good  order  and  discipline and also promotes positive behavior changes in service members without the stigma of a court-martial convic- t i o n. WHO MAY IMPOSE NJP Authority to impose nonjudicial punishment under Article 15, UCMJ, maybe exercised by a CO, an OIC, or  by  certain  officers  to  whom  the  power  has  been delegated by the Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV). In the Navy and Marine Corps, billet designations by the Chief of Naval Personnel and Headquarters Marine Corps identify those persons who are command- ing officers. So the term  commanding  officer  has a precise meaning and is not used arbitrarily. The power to impose NJP is inherent in the office and not in the individual. Thus, the power may be exercised by a person acting as CO, such as when the CO is on leave and the executive officer (XO) succeeds to command. OICs exist in the naval service. An OIC is a com- missioned officer appointed as an OIC of a unit by departmental  orders,  tables  of  organization,  manpower authorizations, orders of a flag or general officer in command, or orders of the senior officer present. Ordinarily, the power to impose NJP cannot be delegated. One exception is that a flag or general officer in command may delegate all or a portion of his or her Article  15  powers  to  a  principal  assistant.  A  principal assistant is a senior officer on a flag or general officer’s staff  who  is  eligible  to  suceed  to  command.  This delegation must be made with (he express approval of the Chief of Naval Personnel or the Commandant of the Marine  Corps. 5-1

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