Tags: us | military | sex | assault

Military Chiefs Oppose Change in Sex Assault Inquiries

Image: Military Chiefs Oppose Change in Sex Assault Inquiries

By    |   Tuesday, 04 Jun 2013 09:38 AM

Military brass are making it clear to Congress that they will resist any moves to take sexual assault cases out of the hands of armed forces commanders.

"A commander is responsible and accountable for everything that happens in his or her unit," said Gen. James Amos, the commandant of the Marine Corps, in a letter to the leaders of the Senate Armed Services Committee. "Victims need to know that their commander holds offenders accountable, not some unknown third-party prosecutor," reports The Washington Post.

In a separate letter, Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno said taking away commanders' authority will "adversely impact discipline."

Odierno said the military cannot "prosecute" its way out of the problem, because "sexual assault is a discipline issue that requires a culture change."

Army Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert; and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh wrote similar letters to Armed Services Committee Chairman Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., and his Republican counterpart Sen. James Inhofe of Oklahoma.

The service commanders appear before a Senate panel Tuesday to speak about an "epidemic" of sex crimes in the military ranks.

Lawmakers have not settled on an approach to combat the problem, but a leading proposal gives uniformed prosecutors, instead of commanders, the ability to investigate sexual assault cases and try them. The military chiefs say the change would send a message that a commander should not be trusted to make good decisions concerning his or her troops.

But advocacy groups and lawmakers claim commanders are not legally trained, and that they have not addressed the problem of sexual assault in the ranks. The Pentagon reported last month that there has been a 35 percent increase in the reported number of active-duty military personnel sexually victimized in the past two years.

The bill giving prosecutors the primary responsibility has attracted 20 co-sponsors -- including four Republicans -- after being introduced by Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York.

Gillibrand told the Post the chiefs' reluctance is inconsistent with their acknowledgment that most sexual assault victims in the military do not trust their superiors to protect them.


© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

 
1Like our page
2Share
Newsfront
Military brass are making it clear to Congress that they will resist any moves to take sexual assault cases out of the hands of armed forces commanders.
us,military,sex,assault
362
2013-38-04
Tuesday, 04 Jun 2013 09:38 AM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved