Military Lawyers Defends False Allegations in Military Court. Defending False Sexual Assault in Military. Civilian Court-Martial Attorney. Civilian Defense Lawyer for Court Martial. Selecting the Best Military Defense Attorney. Hiring the Top Military Defense Attorney. Hiring the Best Military Lawyer. Selecting the Best Military Defense Court Martial Attorney to Defend You. Attorney Michael Waddington Named Fellow by the Elite American Board of Criminal Lawyers.

Drunk female Royal Navy sailor, 31, who sexually assaulted three male colleagues during cold weather expedition in Norway is kicked out of the military

A female Royal Navy sailor has been dismissed for sexually assaulting three male colleagues after a drinking session during a cold weather survival expedition in Norway.

Able Seaman Jodie McSkimmings, 31, straddled one sailor and pinned him on a bed before groping him and two others during a drunken ‘spree’, a court martial heard.

McSkimmings committed five offenses over the space of five hours after drinking at least six cans of beer and a bottle of wine.

It saw her demand kisses from male colleagues, refusing to take no for an answer and then trying to undress them.

As well as the three sexual assaults, she also tried to sit on a Sergeant’s lap before hitting him and then punched a Corporal full in the face while holding a beer can.

AB McSkimmings was based at HMS Neptune, the shore establishment at HMNB Clyde, when she was deployed with the 45 Commando Royal Marine Regiment to Norway in 2020.

Prosecutor Lieutenant Colonel Michael Culver said her first victim saw her ‘swigging from a bottle of wine’ before inviting him into one of the bedrooms during the deployment.

LtCol Culver told Bulford Military Court, Wilts: ‘After about five minutes of normal talking she then began to repeatedly and explicitly seek not just a kiss but also sexual relations with him.

Able Seaman Jodie McSkimmings, 31, (pictured) straddled one sailor and pinned him on a bed before groping him and two others during a drunken 'spree', a court martial heard

Able Seaman Jodie McSkimmings, 31, (pictured) straddled one sailor and pinned him on a bed before groping him and two others during a drunken ‘spree’, a court martial heard

Able Seaman McSkimming at Bulford Military Court which heard details of her drunken night

Able Seaman McSkimming at Bulford Military Court which heard details of her drunken night.

Judge Advocate Alistair McGrigor said it had been a fairly depressing case as he dismissed her

Judge Advocate Alistair McGrigor said it had been a fairly depressing case as he dismissed her.

‘He said to her repeatedly that he refused and said she was drunk.

‘She nonetheless proceeded to straddle him, using her body weight to pin him on the bed. She kissed his mouth and put her hand inside his t-shirt to try to unbutton his trousers.

‘She placed his hand on her buttock. He objected several times and then she did stop but proceeded to hurl abuse at him.’

The court heard she later invited another male colleague into the same room where the first sexual assault happened.

LtCol Culver added: ‘He declined but she was insistent and he complied with her request in order to keep her calm.

‘Again she asked initially for a kiss, he said no and that he had a girlfriend.

‘She repeated and was persistent in demanding kisses.

‘She said ‘it’s only me and you here and nobody needs to find out’. He said ‘that’s not the point, I don’t want to’.

She had previously been stationed at HMNB Clyde at Faslane in Scotland

‘He said he was going to leave and she placed her left hand on his crotch.

‘He said ‘what are you doing’ and asked her to get off him and she left the room muttering after that, leaving him shocked.’

Later that evening, at about 7.30pm, AB McSkimmings was taking part in a quiz in the mess hall.

The court heard she tried to sit on the lap of Sergeant Scott Mitchell but he told her he ‘wasn’t impressed’.

LtCol Culver added: ‘Sgt Mitchell describes a punch at 100 per cent force to his lower back. He asked her what was that and she said ‘I will fucking do you in, you are taking the piss out of me’.’

The officer told her to calm down but she then turned her attention to Corporal Stewart Duggans, who was also on their quiz team.

The court heard: ‘She stared at him for two seconds and punched him in the face with a hand in which she was holding a beer can.

‘She punched him with enough force to completely crush the beer can, dispensing beer over his face and clothes.’

Later that evening, at about 9pm, AB McSkimmings entered the room of another male colleague.

LtCol Culver added: ‘She started trying to unzip his trousers and he objected, saying he had a girlfriend.

‘He pushed her hand away and she attempted to grab his zip a further two more times.

‘He felt shocked, confused and uncomfortable. She eventually stopped and stood up, walked out the room and as she did so she said ‘f**K you then’.’

She admitted three charges of sexual assault, a charge of battery and a charge of using violence against a superior officer.

Mitigating, James Cassels said AB McSkimmings was in a ‘head on’ car crash in December 2019 so was ‘vulnerable’ when she joined the 45 Commandos in Norway in January 2020.

He outlined a history of mental health issues including depression and said she was still struggling with this at the time of the incidents due to suffering ‘misogynistic bullying’ from colleagues.

He said: ‘This is a fairly depressing case for me to dealt with and I have dealt with many.

‘She was the only female out and about with them… she felt isolated… she felt she was put down.

‘People were sexually abusive, verbally and misogynistic and this undermined her confidence to such an extent that she felt totally isolated.’

He explained she had been on a museum trip that morning and had had about six beers before heading back to camp, where she drank a bottle of wine and the incidents began.

Sentencing her, Judge Advocate Alistair McGrigor said: ‘Over a period of five hours you were, and remained, so intoxicated that you had no recollection of the events.

‘These are very serious matters, both of a sexual and violent nature. We accept that challenging behaviour by your male colleagues took place that significantly impaired your mental health.

‘You say you drank to block out the misery you found yourself in but you did so voluntarily.’

She was dismissed from the Royal Navy and ordered to do 120 hours of unpaid work and 20 rehabilitation days.

Command sergeant major at 2nd ID Artillery sexually abused subordinate, prosecutors say

The former senior enlisted leader of the 2nd Infantry Division Artillery faces a general court-martial in October over charges of sexual misconduct.

Sgt. Maj. Dustin Bice was relieved from his leadership position once the criminal charges were referred to a court-martial, according to Sgt. 1st Class Chris Harper, a spokesperson for the 7th Infantry Division, which maintains administrative control of all 2nd Infantry Division units at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington.

Bice is charged with “offenses related to sexual harassment and abusive sexual contact against a subordinate,” Harper told Army Times. “Charges are merely accusations and the accused is presumed innocent until proven guilty.”

He has pled not guilty, according to court-martial records and his attorney.

“We look forward to having our day in court to tell the real story and to clear his good name,” said Jocelyn Stewart, his attorney.

A charge sheet obtained by Army Times stated that Bice groped a subordinate on the breast, buttocks and thigh without her consent. The alleged abusive sexual contact took place in February.

The sergeant major also reportedly told the soldier to delete her text messages in an effort to obstruct justice, according to the charge sheet.

Prosecutors also charged Bice with assault, attempted fraternization, maltreatment of a subordinate and disobeying regulations prohibiting sexual harassment.

Harper emphasized that the command prioritizes addressing sexual misconduct by senior leaders.

“As in any case of sexual harassment, these allegations of senior leader misconduct are taken very seriously and investigated thoroughly prior to disposition,” Harper said.

“Sergeant Major Bice has served with distinction in a dedicated career spanning more than 26 years, including being awarded 4 Bronze Stars, a Purple Heart, and 2 Meritorious Service Medals. From the start he has strongly denied any wrongdoing surrounding the spurious allegations against him,” said Stewart, Bice’s attorney. “In the current climate, the Army ignores the side of the person who is accused, and every allegation moves forward without any meaningful investigation.”

Bice is not the only former command sergeant major to face criminal charges for sexual misconduct this year.

A former Fort Bragg, North Carolina, sergeant major will go to trial for an alleged sexual assault in October, in addition to charges of desertion, extortion, and destroying evidence before his previous court-martial.

The former command sergeant major of Winn Army Community Hospital at Fort Stewart, Georgia, was also sentenced to six months of confinement and dropped in rank to specialist after he was convicted of sexual misconduct in April.

And the former senior enlisted leader of the 4th Infantry Division Artillery was sentenced last month after pleading guilty to an inappropriate relationship with a subordinate and sending lewd text messages to a woman.

That soldier, now-Sgt. 1st Class Benito Perez, was initially charged with sexually assaulting a minor — the same woman to whom he was convicted of sending lewd text messages — but the child sex charges were dropped as part of a plea agreement, according to The Gazette.

Army chaplain facing court martial over more than a dozen sexual assault charges

He is the second religious leader at Fort Leonard Wood to face chid sex assault charges this year.

An Army chaplain is expected to plead guilty at a court martial hearing next week after being charged with over a dozen counts of rape and child sexual assault.

Capt. Jeremy Dunn, assigned to the 3rd Chemical Brigade at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, is being court-martialed on July 14. Dunn was the chaplain for the brigade’s 1st Battalion, 48th Infantry Regiment at the time he was charged.

internet sex crimes

He was charged with six counts of child sexual assault, four counts of rape, and three counts of sexual assault, according to his charge sheet. He was notified of the charges in April. Army Times first reported the charges.

Dunn was “originally charged with 22 specifications among five charges,” and is pleading guilty on July 14 to four specifications on two charges — rape of a child, sexual act on a child, rape by force, and sexual assault without consent, according to Dunn’s attorney, Joe Flees.

The plea agreement allows for sentencing between 10 and 18 years, according to Flees, who anticipates the government will seek an 18-year sentence.

“The military judge will determine his punishment within that range and we will respect whatever decision she makes,” Flees said.

Dunn’s alleged sexual assaults span years — the earliest assault specified in his charge sheet happened in 2015, the latest in 2019 — and occurred at or near Fort Leonard Wood and Fort Belvoir, Virginia. Wood confirmed that the alleged assaults were all against one victim.

Dunn’s charges come just months after a former Army National Guard soldier who served as the director of youth ministry at Fort Leonard Wood pleaded guilty to four counts of sexually abusing a minor, and one count of transporting a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity.

1st Sgt. David McKay admitted in April to sexually abusing four victims, ages 11 to 17, “on dozens of occasions” between 2010 and 2017, according to a Justice Department press release. The abuse happened at Fort Leonard Wood, as well as in Colorado on the youth group’s ski trip, and on camping trips.

McKay faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in federal prison, up to a sentence of life in prison without parole.

Army colonel cleared of groping woman to face second court martial

AN Army colonel cleared of groping a woman is to face a second court martial over another alleged sex assault

Colonel Martin Toney had been accused of the first after a bar incident at the Army skiing championships while in 1970s fancy dress.

Army colonel Martin Toney was cleared of groping a woman but now faces a second court martial over another alleged sex assault
Army colonel Martin Toney was cleared of groping a woman but now faces a second court martial over another alleged sex assault.

The woman said he touched her backside while he was wearing a headband and wig after a fun race at a French Alps resort.

He denied the charge and said he had tapped her with his foot to get her attention.

The Sandhurst graduate was cleared of that allegation at a court martial at Catterick Garrison, North Yorks, last week.

But 30 minutes later, he was back in the same court charged with an offence against a different woman 12 years ago.

He pleaded not guilty and the case was adjourned until November.

Col Toney, who has served for 36 years, faced the first court martial last week after being accused of the sex assault in January last year.

The woman said she felt someone touch her backside and then told her friends: “Colonel Toney slapped my ass,” the hearing was told.

Col Toney, who was based at the Army Personnel Centre in Glasgow, said his foot touched her while in snow boots and he meant to tap her leg.

The Army is investigating a married officer accused of faking deployments and awards amid affairs with several women


JULY 06, 2021

The Army is investigating a married officer accused of faking deployments and awards amid affairs with several women

An Army lieutenant colonel is under investigation after reportedly spinning an insane web of lies over several years in order to carry out affairs with several women.

Lt. Col. Richard Kane Mansir, a civil affairs officer based at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, has had “serious, long-term relationships” with at least six other women over the last five years, while still married to his wife of 18 years, according to a Daily Beast report. The investigation was first reported by Army Times.

According to Army service records, Mansir has served with the 91st Civil Affairs Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, and Army Special Operations Command. He commissioned as a second lieutenant in 2003, and has received the Bronze Star, four Meritorious Service Medals, Joint Service Commendation Medal, and three Army Commendation Medals.

Throughout the relationships, Mansir reportedly lied about being on deployments, going so far as to provide at least one woman with deployment papers the Daily Beast said appear to be fake, and receiving the Silver Star. According to his Army record, Mansir previously deployed to Afghanistan in 2011 and 2012; he has also served in Kuwait, Mali and Germany, according to the Army, though they did not specify when. The Daily Beast reported he has not been overseas since 2014.

He has also not received a Silver Star, according to his record.

Mansir reportedly rented a townhouse for one woman he was engaged to, Chelsea Curnutt, while he was living on base and she was pregnant with their child, went on trips with another woman he was engaged to, and even met the womens’ parents. He reportedly told women he was divorced from his wife at the time — whom he was very much still married to and had three children with, and said one of those three children, his daughter, had died.

“He’s got this playbook,” one woman who was engaged to Mansir in 2017 told the Daily Beast. “He tells these lies about his dead children, about his [post-traumatic stress disorder], his deployments, and all the horrible things he’s had to do. He creates all these imaginary traumas to cloak his lies in.”

In 2019, the crime of adultery under the Uniform Code of Military Justice was rebranded as “extramarital sexual conduct.” The maximum punishment is a dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of pay, and up to a year of confinement. Lesser punishments include administrative separations or court-martial with reduction of rank, lesser time in confinement, and punitive action.

Sharon Mulligan, a spokesperson for the Center for Initial Military Training at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, told Army Times that the Army “is aware of and investigating the allegations against Lt. Col. Mansir.” The Daily Beast reported that Mansir has also been suspended amid the investigation. The Army confirmed on Wednesday that the investigation was still ongoing.

Mansir’s bizarre alternate reality came to light after Curnutt, who he was dating and expecting a child with, went looking for him in June after not hearing from him for days. The last communication they’d had was when Curnutt called him to tell him she was having contractions. He told her not to bother him at work, the Daily Beast reported, and didn’t respond to “dozens” of text messages and calls in the hours afterward.

According to The Daily Beast, Curnutt then called support staff at Joint Base Langley-Eustis and was connected with a sergeant major who called Curnutt “by the name she thought belonged to Mansir’s ex-wife.” The sergeant major informed Curnutt that Mansir was on leave, so she called the woman she believed to be Mansir’s former wife.

“I was like, ‘Listen, I know you probably don’t like me because I’m the new person in his life, but I’m calling you out of desperation because I haven’t been able to find Kane,’” Curnutt told the Daily Beast. “And she goes, ‘Chelsea, we’re still married.’”

Mansir and his wife, who is unnamed in the Beast report, have been married for almost 18 years, according to the Daily Beast; she moved back to Illinois last year to “give him some space” while they were having marital issues. She was planning to move back to Virginia in January when “she got a phone call from another woman telling her she was engaged to him.”

When Curnutt went looking for Mansir, she reportedly found him at his parents’ house with another woman. It was then that Mansir’s secret life began unraveling.

Curnutt, Mansir’s wife, and the woman who was engaged to Mansir in 2017 began working together to untangle all of Mansir’s lies, according to the Daily Beast report, finding that he was apparently having serious relationships with at least four other women over the last five years and that he “had a habit of dating Army subordinates and widows of men who died in combat—women who’d be too embarrassed to say anything about it, or whose careers would be ruined if they did.”

Curnutt posted an old video on Instagram on June 23 showing her and Mansir cutting into a cake to reveal the gender of their baby. Curnutt said in the post that when the truth about Mansir came to light, her friends “confronted me and told me they knew something was reallllly off but they didn’t want to make accusations.”

“Watching my gender reveal now vs. then, all I see is a tainted memory,” she said. “It disgusts me seeing him ACT the way he did knowing that it was all just a facade.”



Federal ‘Vanessa Guillen’ Act introduced, data reveals risk of sexual assault at Fort Bliss

Dónde está Vanessa Guillén? Misteriosa desaparición de soldado dentro de  base militar, se quejaba de acoso - Los Angeles Times

by: Erin Coulehan

Posted:  Updated: 

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Christian Alvarado never thought he’d be convicted of sexually assaulting Pfc. Asia Graham and other women.

“These [expletive] are going to trip when I walk out of this,” Alvarado told Maj. Natalia Cardona, the military forensic psychologist who evaluated him as part of a general court-martial.

Alvarado’s statement prior to being convicted and sentenced to 18 years underscores the attitudes that lawmakers and advocates say are emblematic of the need for military justice reform when it comes to sexual assault.

“We’re here today because every year, 20,000 service members are sexually assaulted and another 100,000 are sexually harassed,” Rep. Jackie Speier, D-California, said in a news conference on Wednesday.

Rep. Veronica Escobar, D-Texas, joined Speier and a coterie of legislators from both parties and chambers of the U.S. Congress to introduce the Vanessa Guillen Military Justice Improvement and Increasing Prevention Act. The bipartisan and bicameral bill would transfer the decision to prosecute serious crimes in the military from the chain of command and into the hands of trained, independent military prosecutors. Escobar is co-leading efforts on the House side.

U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-New York, introduced the Military Justice Improvement and Increasing Prevention Act (MJIIPA) to the Senate earlier this week. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas,. is also working on the act.

“For eight years, I have proudly worked hand-in-hand with Sen. Gillibrand on this crucial, bipartisan legislation to combat sexual violence in our nation’s military,” Cruz wrote in an email to KTSM 9 News. “Unfortunately, sexual assault within the ranks continues to be a substantial problem facing our service members — and it’s one we must address decisively.”

The continued calls for legislation come in the wake of Graham’s death and the murder of Spc. Vanessa Guillen following separate incidents of sexual assault while enlisted in the military.

“The fact remains, under the status quo, too many victims are reluctant to come forward and report these horrific crimes,” Cruz wrote. “Moving prosecution of sexual assaults outside of the chain of command can help prevent those assaults by increasing reporting throughout our military and assuring victims that any possible conflicts with their command structure won’t affect their case.”

Analyses of sexual assault and sexual harassment in the U.S. Army was conducted at the request of the U.S. Army’s Deputy Chief of Staff, G-1 to evaluate where and why incidents are most prevalent. The analyses found the average total risk to all women in the Army overall is 5.8 percent, but that some groups of women face a much higher risk of sexual assault/harassment based on the installation that they’re assigned to.

Fort Bliss was found to have the second-highest risk for women with a rate of 7.6 percent. The study found that Fort Hood has the highest risk for sexual assault, at 8.4 percent. The study’s authors reported that about 1 in 12 women at Fort Hood are sexually assaulted.

Additional risk was identified based on commands and career fields. The commands with the highest total risk for women are combat units, particularly the 1st Cavalry Division (with a risk of 9.3 percent), Headquarters, III Corps (8.1 percent overall risk), both at Fort Hood; and the 1st Armored Division (8.5 percent), which is at Fort Bliss.

Women in artillery careers were found to have the highest total risk of sexual assault at a rate of 10.6 percent out of all groups of soldiers evaluated.

The study’s researchers say one explanation is that both Fort Hood and Fort Bliss have large volumes of young, unmarried women who are junior-ranking soldiers.

The research team also examined adjusted risk, which evaluates the risk of sexual assault and harassment on an installation-by-installation basis. Again, Fort Hood and Fort Bliss were reported to have high adjusted risk, meaning that women at these installations are at greater risk of sexual assault than at comparative bases. Men in the Army, by contrast, were found to have an overall risk of 0.6 percent of sexual assault and 6.5 percent overall risk of sexual harassment.

The researchers’ recommendation is to optimize reductions in sexual assault rates by offering enhanced and expanded prevention programs to installations, commands and career fields where soldiers are most at risk. An additional recommendation for the researchers is to collect survey data to quickly and efficiently identify units, commands, bases, career fields and other groups at risk for sexual assault and harassment.

Proposed legislation and recommendations by researchers also urge the implementation of preventative efforts. Research suggests that the climate of a particular base of unit plays a role in the prevalence of sexual assault or harassment.

“Groups of soldiers that have better supervisor unit and unit climate scores tend to have lower adjusted sexual assault risk and sexual harassment risk scores, while groups with worse climate scores have higher adjusted risk,” according to the study.

Another recommendation is to develop climate-improvement interventions for commands, installations and career fields with elevated adjusted risk for sexual assault and harassment and poor climate scores.

Other characteristics were identified with elevated risks of sexual assault among women in the military, particularly groups with large proportions of soldiers with combat arms jobs. The recommendation is to examine the distinctions between service members’ experiences in similar groups with different risk profiles in order to determine factors such as work life, social life, culture, etc., that could contribute to disparities when it comes to sexual assault/harassment exposure.

The authors of the study stress conducting studies and sharing historical sexual assault risk and harassment data with unit commanders.

“When we have a system that fails victims, everyone is failed. Because everyone is a potential victim,” said Rep. Michael R. Turner, R-Ohio.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is looking to the future and is confident the bill will pass quickly in the House and Senate.

Legislators working on the bill said they wanted to also remember the lives lost before introduction of the legislation.

“We come together today with one voice, with one plan, to save service members from the fates of Specialist Guillen, Private First Class Asia Graham, Airman First Class Natasha Aposhian,” said Speier.

Court-martial begins for Kirtland airman accused of possessing illegal weapons

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A court-martial has begun for a Kirtland airman accused of possessing a large cache of weapons. Investigators say Senior Airman Charles Justice imported an illegal silencer from China. Police later found 17 guns and large amounts of ammunition at his home on base, along with images describing how to make a machine gun and explosives and photos with names of mass shooters written on them.

He is charged with dereliction of duty, wrongful disposition of military property, and larceny. According to a news release from Kirtland AFB, the trial will be held in a courtroom on base. No other information was provided.

Fort Bliss soldier found guilty of raping Asia Graham, 1 other woman; sentenced to 18 years

Christian Alvarado/Courtesy EPPD.

El Paso, Texas (KTSM) — Pfc. Christian Alvarado was found guilty Friday of raping fellow Fort Bliss soldier Pfc. Asia Graham. He was sentenced to 18 years and three months, with 108 days credited. He was also dishonorably discharged.

Shortly after 2 p.m. on Friday, Judge Col. Robert Shuck issued his verdicts.

Alvarado was found guilty on the sexual assault of Graham, the sexual assault and rape of a second accuser and guilty on one count of intentionally deceiving military investigators. He was found not guilty of an alleged assault in a hotel, and not guilty of the two counts of sexual assault alleged by a former girlfriend in Mesa, Ariz.

Graham was found dead on New Year’s Eve 2020.

The judge presiding over the general court-martial of Pfc. Christian Alvarado, who faces multiple counts of sexual assault and strangulation, adjourned the court around 11 a.m. Friday to begin deliberations.

Both parties gave their closing arguments to a packed court room this morning over the course of two tense hours.

All three accusers, their families, and the Graham family were present Friday and awaiting the verdict.

As KTSM reported before, Alvarado testified Thursday that Pfc. Asia Graham twice pressured him to sell “vape juice” cartridges for synthetic cannabis pens.

Graham, whom military officials say died of an accidental mixed-drug intoxication on New Year’s Eve 2020, accused Alvarado of sexually assaulting her when she had just arrived at Fort Bliss in December 2019. Graham filed a report against Alvarado in May 2020.

These five Army posts have the highest sexual assault risk, study shows

Fort Hood and Fort Bliss, Texas, top the list of Army installations where women are at the highest risk for sexual assault, taking into account several factors, according to a Rand Corp. study released Friday. Fort Riley, Kansas; Fort Campbell, Kentucky; and Fort Carson, Colorado, round out of the top five.

Researchers concluded that large numbers of young and inexperienced soldiers could account for those risks, but so, too, can toxic command climates and proximity to combat arms units.

“For example, we estimated that the total sexual assault risk to Army women at Fort Hood during fiscal year (FY) 2018 was 8.4 percent,” according to the report. “By comparison, the average total risk to all women in the Army during this period was 5.8 percent, almost one-third lower.”

The study is part of a larger Army G-1 project dubbed “Identifying Army Organizational Factors Contributing to Sexual Assault Risk,” a focus point for the Army in the wake of the death of Spc. Vanessa Guillen at Fort Hood last year.

“Fort Hood and Fort Bliss have large numbers of young, unmarried, less-educated, and junior ranking soldiers, who are known to be at higher risk of sexual assault,” according to the report. “This raises the question of whether groups — such as installations — with higher risk estimates have soldiers assigned to them who are at higher risk because of their individual characteristics, or whether their personnel would be expected to experience lower risk if stationed at another base.”

Even when compared to only other posts of similar size and demographics, researchers estimate that women at Ford Hood are still at a 1.7-percent increased risk of sexual assault.

Researchers then adjusted their calculations for those at-risk characteristics ― age, marital status and so on ― and found a completely different set of high-risk posts for women and men of any demographic.

For women, Fort Drum, New York; Fort Lewis, Washington; and Okinawa, Japan, posed the greatest sexual assault risk. For men, it was Fort Drum; Osan, South Korea; and Italy in general.

“This suggests the possibility that bases, commands, and CMFs with larger proportions of women who live on a base face higher sexual assault risks than would otherwise be expected given their personnel characteristics,” according to the report. “Similarly, more deployments and environments with greater proportions of combat arms occupations are associated with increased adjusted risk for women.”

A congressional hearing came one week after two proposals to reform CID were outlined in briefing documents obtained by Army Times.

Deployments, more broadly, presented a higher risk for harassment among both genders.

“Higher operational tempo — defined as days deployed on a Global War on Terrorism mission — is also associated with higher adjusted sexual assault risk and sexual harassment risk among women and higher sexual harassment risk among men,” the report reads.

The study also examined military occupational specialties, with data showing that women in field artillery and engineering are at the highest risk for sexual assault ― for example, 10.6 percent for field artillery.

However, calculating risk by MOS is challenging, because some career fields have too few women to represent a significant sample.

“Field artillery was the first combat [career management field] opened to women, and the only one with sufficient numbers of women to allow estimates of risk by the period covered by this project,” the report stated, meaning combat MOSs like infantry and armor can’t yet be evaluated.

Sgt. Taylor Knueven pitches an idea to better the Army's Sexual Harassment and Assault and Prevention Program during a panel at Fort Bragg, N.C. (Sgt. Marygian D. Barnes/Army)

Sgt. Taylor Knueven pitches an idea to better the Army’s Sexual Harassment and Assault and Prevention Program during a panel at Fort Bragg, N.C. (Sgt. Marygian D. Barnes/Army)

Elsewhere, the study confirmed what other research and experts have long emphasized: toxic command climates mean higher risk of assault, and where sexual harassment is a problem, sexual assault is disproportionately higher.

“Notably, sexual harassment is more common than sexual assault in the Army, but our results also showed that the risk of sexual harassment is highly correlated with the risk of sexual assault,” the report reads. “Thus, bases with high sexual assault risk have high sexual harassment risk, and those with low sexual assault risk have low sexual harassment risk.”

In other words, a command that tolerates harassment is more like to foster assaults.

“For example, more-positive unit climate and supervisor climate scores are associated with lower adjusted sexual assault and sexual harassment risk among women and lower adjusted sexual harassment risk among men,” according to the report.

Rand researchers recommend that the Army create a strategy that takes into account the disproportionate ways that sexual assault and harassment can affect soldiers.

For example, they could mine the Defense Equal Opportunity Employment Survey for units, MOSs or other groups with greater harassment and assault reports.

“The Army should investigate the differences in soldiers’ experiences in similar groups with different risk profiles, such as the 2nd Infantry Division and the 4th Infantry Division, to understand what differences in work life, social life, culture, or climate could be contributing to women’s risk exposure,” the report reads.

Army leaders could then develop targeted programs to improve the climates for those groups, and follow that up with briefing materials for incoming commanders, so they are aware of the unit’s issues and attempts to address them.

“Decision makers should share historical sexual assault and sexual harassment risk information with unit commanders,” the report added. “Doing so can forewarn commanders of known problems that are likely to persist within their units. This information can sensitize the commanders to the possible need for special prevention measures and prepare them to address problems quickly.”

Accusers testify in court-martial of Fort Bliss soldier accused of rape

Court Martial Offenses

by: Erin Coulehan

Posted:  Updated: 

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — A trial over allegations of sexual assault against a Fort Bliss soldier continued on Tuesday as prosecutors and defense attorneys jousted over the case.

Private First Class (Pfc.) Christian Alvarado stands accused of several sexual assault charges. A court-martial trial began this week.

On Tuesday, the court revealed that Special Agent Aaron Postma, who testified on Monday as a Senior Interviewer in the Criminal Investigations Unit (CID), was in fact a polygraph administrator.

Postma administered two polygraphs on Alvarado pertaining to two victims: the late Asia Graham, and another accuser.  Graham was found unresponsive in her barracks on New Year’s Eve and was later pronounced dead by the Fort Bliss Department of Emergency Services personnel – family says it was from asphyxiation.

The defense kicked-off around 9:30am, with defense attorneys asking Postma, 34, about his education level.

Postma testified that Closed Circuit TV was used to film and record the interview for records. He also said that he reviewed Special Agent James Diamond’s case summaries of his interviews with Alvarado to avoid any bias that may arise from viewing the video footage.

Interview techniques used by Postma included rapport building and minimization. And, part of the rapport building process, Postma said, is using words that are in the examinee’s lexicon.

“P**sy hits the radar of don’t give a sh*t when you’re drunk,” is an example he used when discussing whether Graham was conscious during intercourse with Alvarado.

“Even if she was having the greatest time of her f***ing life,” he added.

The defense then questioned if Postma watered things down to Alvarado to elicit a false statement.

“I ensure I have the most accurate information to perform a good test,” Postma testified.

Alvarado did not pass the first polygraph test and his responses contradicted his initial statements to Diamond.

He’d later fail the other three.

According to Postma, Alvarado’s story changed when it came to if Graham lost consciousness during sex.

Alvarado said she passed out about halfway through intercourse. He knew this because Graham stopped moaning and her eyes were closed, as if asleep.

Postma asked Alvarado questions about sexual deviancy as it relates to generating questions related to a sexual assault accusation.

Sexual deviancy is now characterized by psychologists as “paraphilic disorders.”

Paraphilic disorders pertain to sexual desires and behaviors involving another person’s psychological distress, injury, or death; or a desire for sexual behaviors involving unwilling persons or anyone unable to give consent.

The polygraph results are used as leverage to address statement inconsistencies and to enable Postma to “score a good chart,” rather than an instrument of intimidation, said the Judge.

“The results are not relevant,” said the Judge, “it’s all about how the statements are presented to the court.”

Shortly before a 90 minute lunch recess, arguments presented to the court by the defense and prosecution posed a multiple choice question to the Judge.

Scroll to Top