While serving as an first lieutenant in the infantry in the War in Afghanistan with the 4th Brigade Combat Team of the 82nd Airborne Division in 2012, Lorance was charged with two counts of second-degree murder after he ordered his soldiers to open fire on three Afghan men who were on a motorcycle. He was found guilty by a court-martial in 2013 and sentenced to 20 years in prison (later reduced to 19 years by the reviewing commanding general). He was confined in the United States Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas for six years.
In 2015, Lorance became a cause célèbre among conservative commentators and activists. Fox News personalities, in particular Sean Hannity, advocated for Lorance to be pardoned. Lorance was eventually pardoned by President Donald Trump on November 15, 2019.