Military members around the country are watching today as the U.S. Senate takes up legislation aimed at curbing military sexual assault cases. The controversial bill would remove the chain of command in the legal system in such cases.
Most federal workers around San Antonio were told to go home today, including most of the civilian personnel involved in military operations. That includes military intelligence, which is based in San Antonio.
General Edward Rice Jr. will be recorded as the commander who led the investigation into the worst sex scandal in Air Force history, having ordered the investigation of sexual misconduct by military training instructors at Lackland.
Rice and Maj. Gen. Margaret Woodward announced the results of the investigation last November, finding a laundry list of policy characteristics that the report said allowed a climate of abuse to occur.
A military judge has sentenced another military training instructor in the ongoing investigation of sexual misconduct at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland.
Senior Airman Andrew S. Lira was found guilty of having unprofessional intimate relationships -- from May 2010 through December 2011 -- with eight female trainees at Lackland, one of them a basic trainee.
He also was found guilty of adultery, and of obstructing justice by telling one of the trainees to delete all of their text messages and asking her to lie to investigators.
Senior Airman Christopher Oliver, a military training instructor, is facing a general court-martial today at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland.
Oliver is charged with aggravated sexual assault and abusive sexual contact against a boot camp trainee. He also is charged with having unprofessional relationships with two other basic trainees and continuing those relationships when the trainees advanced into technical training.
Training instructors are prohibited by the Uniform Code of Military Justice from having personal relationships with trainees at any level.
The eight officers on the all-male jury panel handed Tech. Sgt. Jaime Rodriguez, a recruiter from Lake Jackson, which is near Houston, 27 years in prison – the harshest sentence issued in the sex scandal so far – which was two years longer than what was recommended by prosecutors.
The former military recruiter was also given a dishonorable discharge after his conviction on 29 of 30 charges involving sex crimes against women who came through his office.