substantial rights were otherwise materially prejudiced,
appropriate corrective action must be taken. The test of
the sufficiency of a specification is not whether it could
have been made more definite and certain, but whether
the facts alleged and reasonably implied set forth the
offense sought to be charged with sufficient clarity to
apprise the accused of what he or she must defend
himself or herself against. Whether the record is
sufficient to enable the accused to avoid a second
prosecution for the same offense must also be
considered in applying this test.
The preparation of the charge sheet is a matter for
the regulations of the secretary of a department;
however, certain rules and considerations have been
adopted to make sure there is consistency in the
preparation of the charge sheet. In typing the charge
sheet use initial caps.
Let us take a look at the
block-by-block preparation instructions:
Block 1: Name of AccusedType the accuseds
last name, first name, and middle initial.
Block 2: SSNVerify the accuseds SSN from his
or her enlistment contract and type in as verified.
Block 3: Grade or RankAbbreviate the grade or
rank of the accused; for example, SN, YN3, BM2, PFC,
ENS, or LT.
PaygradeIndicate the accuseds
paygrade by either an O or E level; for example, E-3,
E-4, E-7, O-2, or O-4.
Unit or OrganizationType the
organization to which the accused is assigned for
strength accountability. For example, for ships use the
name of ship and hull number, USS Midway (CV 41);
for shore activities use the name of activity and
geographical location, U.S. Naval Support Activity,
Naples, Italy; or Fighter Squadron One Zero One, Naval
Air Station, Oceana, Virginia Beach, Virginia.
Block 6: Current ServiceVerify these entries
from the accuseds enlistment contract(s).
a. Initial DateExample: 1 April 19CY.
3 years, 4 years, or
Block 7: Pay Per MonthVerify this amount with
the disbursing or finance office.
a. BasicDollar amount.
b. Sea/Foreign DutyDollar amount.
Example: $100.00. (If there is no sea or foreign duty
pay, then type in the word None.)
c. TotalAdd up the pay per month and the
sea/foreign duty pay and enter the dollar amount.
Block 8: Nature of Restraint of AccusedUse one
of the following terms: Restriction, Confinement, or
None, whichever is applicable.
Block 9: Date(s) ImposedShow the inclusive
dates of any restraint, including the beginning and
ending dates. Example: 1-2 August 19CY or 1 May -7
If the accused is still in restraint on the date you are
preparing the charge sheet, show only the date that the
restraint began. If the accused is released from restraint
status after the charge sheet is typed and before the date
of trial, the trial counsel (TC) will amend the entry as
appropriate and initial it.
According to the decision rendered in United States
v. Allen, 17 M.J. 126 (1984), periods of legal pretrial
confinement are given a day-for-day credit against any
confinement awarded at trial. Additionally, periods of
illegal pretrial confinement or restriction that is
considered by the military judge to be equal to
confinement will be given an additional day-for-day
You may also list confinement by civilian
authorities. However, it must be related to, or as a result
of, the current charges listed on the charge sheet.
Block 10: Charges and Specifications-Use block
10 for stating the charges and specifications alleged
against the accused.
Prepare the charges and
specifications according to part IV, MCM.
Block 11a: Name of AccuserType in the
accusers last name, first name, and middle initial.
Block 11b: Grade-List the grade or rate of the
accuser. Example: CAPT, ENS, LTJG, LNC, or YN1.
You may spell out the grade if room allows.
Block 11c: Organization of AccuserType in the
activity of the accuser. Example: U.S. Naval Support
Activity, Naples, Italy.
Block 11d and e: Signature of Accuser/DateThe
accuser will sign and date this entry after swearing to
the charges and specifications. The accuser must sign
all copies of the charge sheet in the presence of the
officer who administers the oath. The accuser, by
signing the charge sheet, prefers the charges. Any
person subject to the Code may prefer charges.