Hagel Outraged over Latest Military Sex Scandal

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The amount of sexual harassment and abuse within the armed services is reaching alarming new highs.

In the latest case, allegations of sexual misconduct have been brought against an Army sergeant first class at Fort Hood, Texas, who was assigned to prevent such crimes.

He's under investigation for allegedly forcing at least one soldier into prostitution and sexually assaulting two others.

The news comes only a week after an Air Force officer working in a sexual prevention office was arrested and charged with sexual battery.  
    
Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel says he's outraged and disgusted by the amount of sexual abuse in the military.

"Sexual assault is a despicable crime and one of the most serious challenges facing this department," Hagel charged.

Lawmakers are also expressing their anger.

"This is sickening. Twice now, in a matter of as many weeks, we've seen the very people charged with protecting victims of sexual assault being charged as perpetrators," Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., said.

"It's an astonishing reminder that the Pentagon has both a major problem on its hands and a tremendous amount of work to do to assure victims - who already only report a small fraction of sexual assaults - that they are changing the culture around these heinous crimes," she said.
    
After this latest incident, Hagel's making an unprecedented move. He's ordering all of the military's sexual assault prevention coordinators and military recruiters be re-trained, re-credentialed and re-screened.
         
"I cannot convey strongly enough (Secretary Hagel's) frustration, anger, and disappointment over these troubling allegations and the breakdown in discipline and standards they imply," Pentagon spokesman George Little said in a statement.
    
The Defense Department recently released alarming statistics on sexual assault. Its annual report show's there's been a 6 percent increase of sexual assault in the military since 2011.

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Heather Sells

Heather Sells

CBN News Reporter

Heather Sells enjoys reporting on a variety of issues for CBN News. Some of her recent stories have focused on religious liberties, technology, AIDS, overseas missions, domestic trafficking, and politics.  Follow Heather on Twitter @SellsHeather and "like" her at Facebook.com/HeatherSellsCBNNews.