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Military

Iran Press TV

Navy officer sentenced to 90 days in jail for sexual assault

Iran Press TV

Tue Jul 30, 2013 11:38AM GMT

A US Navy officer has been sentenced to 90 days in prison after he found guilty of sexually assaulting a sailor aboard the USS Germantown.

A military jury convicted Chief Petty Officer John Charles Averell, who will also be reduced in rank to E-1, on Monday, Stars and Stripes reported.

The 41-year-old petty officer will also receive a bad conduct discharge, meaning he will lose the lifetime pension he earned from his 23 years of service.

The jury rejected Averell’s argument that a sailor came on to him in a dental office aboard a barge supporting the USS Germantown.

The young woman described the aftermath of being sexually assaulted on Oct. 20, 2012 from the witness stand on Monday.

The victim said she attempted to commit suicide several months later. She sees five different doctors and takes several medications.

“He took advantage of me,” she said. “And I want to make sure that everyone here today knows that.”

The Pentagon said in a report that sexual abuse throughout the services increased from 19,000 incidents in 2010 to 26,000 last year.

The report also found that 62 percent of those who report sexual abuse in the military are faced with some sort of retaliation for reporting their cases.

Eighty cases of sexual assault were reported by cadets and midshipmen during the last academic year, up from 65 the previous year, according to the report.

Pentagon statistics indicate the problem of sexual assault has grown sharply in recent years, but military leaders and some politicians are deeply split over whether the trend means that radical changes are needed in the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

AGB/AGB



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