By Debbie Gregory.
In recent months, the Air Force has been plagued by numerous sexual assault scandals. Most recently, it was revealed that its Chief of the Air Force Sexual Assault Prevention and Response office was arrested for drunkenly groping a woman. Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski was arrested and charged with sexual battery for allegedly grabbing the breasts and buttocks of a woman he did not know. The woman called the police, resulting in Krusinski’s arrest.
This comes on the heels of Staff Sgt. Emily Allen’s guilty plea to having sex with a male airman in 2012, pursuing a sexual relationship with another male trainee, and having unprofessional social relationships with two female students. Generally, during the recruiting and basic training processes, personal relations between recruiters and potential recruits/trainees are prohibited. The integrity and leadership of the faculty and staff in basic military training must not be compromised by personal relationships with trainees.
Staff Sgt. Allen is the first female training instructor to have pleaded guilty to having sex with male and female students. She is among more than 100 instructors at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland charged in the current sex training scandal, and could face court-martial.
More than two-dozen Air Force training sergeants have been investigated in improper sexual activities. Airmen convicted of sexual offense face lifelong consequences. There is also the probability that if convicted, an airman will carry the label of “registered sex offender”. Airmen convicted of sexual assault at a court-martial are required to register in the state where they live, work or attend school.
Safe, secure learning environments are critical to young soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines. Last year, former Secretary of Defense Panetta directed Army Maj. Gen. Gary S. Patton, Director of the DOD’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office, to review assault prevention and response training by officers and senior noncommissioned officers before they assume unit command or senior enlisted positions.
Krusinski has been charged with sexual battery, and has been removed from his job for the duration of the investigation. Allen has been sentenced to 30 days of hard labor, and her rank reduced to Airman First Class.
All this is in the wake of the outrage caused when Lt. General Craig A. Franklin overturned the sexual-assault conviction and approved clemency for F-16 fighter pilot Lt. Colonel James Wilkerson. It seems that the Air Force in particular has been the center of military sexual assault issues. If you want to read more on Lt. General Franklin’s action – go to https://militaryconnection.com/?p=1437