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Edwards AFB

Edwards AFB Military Defense Attorney

Edwards Air Force Base, located in Kern County, California, has been used continuously since 1933.  Formerly known as Muroc Air Force Base, Edwards AFB is home to the 412th Test Wing.

If you are facing a military discipline proceeding at Edwards AFB, you have the right to a civilian defense attorney of your choice.

To discuss your case with a former Marine Corps military judge, contact attorney Patrick McLain.

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Types of Military Justice at Edwards AFB

There are two main types of legal proceedings you may face under the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ): nonjudicial punishment and court-martial.

Nonjudicial Punishment

Also known as Article 15, nonjudicial punishment is a type of administrative action that is a common disciplinary procedure in the Air Force.   An NJP is not a formal criminal proceeding, but it still carries serious consequences.

An NJP is initiated by your commanding officer; however, you have the right to reject the NJP and demand a formal court-martial hearing in its place.  While a court-martial carries stiffer penalties, it also provides a formal setting with strict rules of evidence that are not available at an NJP hearing.  The decision to reject an NJP should not be taken lightly, and you should always consult with an attorney before making a decision.

If you receive an unfavorable result in your NJP, you have the right to appeal the result up the chain of command. The potential grounds for appeal are twofold: (1) the outcome was unjust, or (2) the sentence was disproportionate to the offense.


A court-martial is a formal criminal proceeding under the UCMJ.  If you are found guilty, your criminal record will reflect a conviction.  While a court-martial is typically reserved for the most serious offenses, charges may be brought against you for any violation of the UCMJ.  Despite the greater risk, a court-martial is often a better option for an Airman, NCO, or officer faced with charges of misconduct to the greater rights available, including the right to counsel, available at trial by court-martial.  

If you are convicted at your court-martial, you have the right to an appeal.   There are two appellate-level courts that hear appeals from the Air Force:

  • The Air Force Court of Criminal Appeals
    The Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces

You are entitled to hire a civilian criminal defense attorney at every stage of a court-martial, from your initial charge all the way through your appeal.

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You Need a Civilian Military Lawyer


  • Former Federal Prosecutor & Military Judge
    Attorney Patrick J. McLain's years of experience across the aisle provide him with a unique perspective.
  • Over Two Decades in the U.S. Marine Corps
  • Our Firm is Top-Rated & Award-Winning
  • Over 3,500 Cases Successfully Handled

Common Offenses at Edwards AFB

Below are some of the most common offenses that are heard at either a NJP or a court-martial.:

Common NJP Offenses

  • Unauthorized absence (AWOL)
  • Drunk on duty
  • Fraternization
  • Violation of orders
  • Destroying government property

Common Court-Martial Offenses

Potential Penalties

While the penalties for an NJP are typically lighter than those assessed at a court-martial, the reality is that a conviction in either proceeding could have profound consequences for you.  In either case, you could face separation proceedings and find yourself involuntarily separated from the Air Force.

Other common penalties include:

  • Restriction,
  • Loss of pay,
  • Extra duties, and
  • Loss of rank.

Additionally, a court-martial may also lead to serious consequences like incarceration or a punitive discharge.


    "Amazing strength and integrity with the combination of experience, insight, and knowledge of military law."

    I have found my lawyer Patrick McLain, to be honest, right to the point, consistently giving me realistic outcomes through the whole process of my case. He's definitely no nonsense, cut to the chase. As a client…I've never been left hanging; he makes sure all my correspondence is returned. He's got amazing strength and integrity with the combination of experience, insight, and knowledge of military law. He stands behind his words and expects the same in return. I say my blessings every day for him taking my case. With him as my attorney, I've achieved best possible outcomes.

    - Gina F.
    "Great lawyer and better person"
    Mr. McLain helped me through the most difficult experience in my life. As a Marine Officer facing an upcoming board of inquiry for conduct issues, I was fearful of losing a career that I deeply cherished. Mr. McLain not only gave me perfect legal advice throughout the process, but also reached out many times to see how I was doing on a personal level. A great lawyer and better person, Mr. McLain helped me become successful in my board of inquiry and keep moving forward in my career. His knowledge and experience are top notch, and his military experience and personal qualities make him the best lawyer out there to defend military personnel. Would highly recommend to anyone.
    - Jonathan
    "Thanks to him I am now able to get on with my life."

    It took some time to make it happen, but it did just like Patrick said, he is a hard charging guy that can help you get what you deserve, Thanks to him I am now able to get on with my life.

    - Chip
    "He is a hard worker and will fight for you the moment you choose him to be on your team!"

    My husband hired Patrick for his summary court martial and Patrick and his team were there every step of the way. They communicated everything they needed and were even there when either me or my husband had any questions. He is a hard worker and will fight for you the moment you choose him to be on your team!

    - Angela
    "Always made me feel as though I was his most important client, and was knowledgeable on all subjects."

    He completely cared, took my case personally, always made me feel as though I was his most important client, and was knowledgeable on all subjects. I give him the highest rating possible and totally recommend him to anyone who is 

    - Mike
    "I won my military case due to his diligence, knowledge and experience in military law."

    I cannot recommend Patrick highly enough. I won my military case due to his diligence, knowledge and experience in military law. Had I proceeded on my own, I would have lost, for the process was simply too complex. When working with Patrick, there was never a time when I felt left in the dark on my case, nor a time when his assessments and instructions were unclear. Should you be in any difficult circumstance, Patrick will work his tail off for you and keep you clearly informed on the status of your case. Again, I highly recommend the services of Patrick McLain.

    - Dan C.
    "I was entirely impressed with mclain’s work on my case."

    I called McLain when the military charged me with some B.S., McLain immediately jumped into action and made things happen in my favor. Don't do it alone … your military chain of command will try to make you think that your cooperation will help you, it will NOT. I was entirely impressed with McLain's work on my 

    - Chris C.
    "Amazing lawyer who fights for you!"
    A tremendous lawyer in a time of need. After being accused of conduct unbecoming an officer for personal conduct while off duty, I hired Mr. McLain to help me through the process. He diligently worked behind the scenes to make sure my voice was being heard. Despite my inability to listen to his direction early on, Mr. Mclain was patient and continued to fight on my behalf. Mr. McLain helped me win at a board of inquiry with no other disciplinary action. A sincere man, who is dedicated to his clients. Would strongly recommend and is a great asset to military clients everywhere.
    - Former Client
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