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United States v. Bygrave

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces
46 M.J. 491 (1997)


In 1986, Bygrave (defendant) tested positive for the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) and was subsequently treated at a naval hospital in San Diego, California. Despite being warned by physicians about the spread of the virus through sexual contact, Bygrave maintained a sexually-active lifestyle with at least two partners. The first, Petty Officer “J” was not told by Bygrave of his HIV status. Bygrave and “J” engaged in regular, and often unprotected, sexual intercourse over the course of a year. Two years later, “J” tested HIV-positive. Bygrave also had a sexual relationship with Boatswain’s Mate Third Class “C”. Bygrave informed “C” of his HIV-positive status prior to the two engaging in any sexual acts. Despite the warning, “C” and Bygrave engaged in consensual protected sexual intercourse on a regular basis, but not all occasions. Thereafter “C” also tested HIV-positive. Six months later, Bygrave and “C” were married. Bygrave was charged with two specifications (counts) of aggravated assault in violation of Article 128(b)(1) of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and was tried by a general court-martial, military judge alone. Bygrave was convicted on both counts and was convicted. The Court of Criminal Appeals affirmed the judgment of conviction and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces granted review.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Arterton, J.)

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