Advertisement

You will be redirected to the page you want to view in  seconds.

Navy disqualifies 151 sailors after sex assault review

Mar. 12, 2014 - 06:00AM   |  
Some of the sailors removed their jobs as sexual assault counselors will receive the training and return to their posts; others will be reassigned, according to a Navy spokesman.
Some of the sailors removed their jobs as sexual assault counselors will receive the training and return to their posts; others will be reassigned, according to a Navy spokesman. (Navy)
  • Filed Under

WASHINGTON — The Navy has disqualified 151 sailors serving as sexual assault counselors, instructors and recruiters up from just five last year after a review found that most of them lacked proper training, USA TODAY has learned.

The services have been scrubbing the ranks of troops serving in "positions of trust" for potential predators and poor performers since May. That's when Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the military to stand down to review its policies and personnel involved in combating the Pentagon's sexual assault crisis.

The review resulted in the Army suspending 588 soldiers who served as counselors, recruiters and drill instructors for offenses ranging from reckless driving to sexual assault. The Army, which reviewed 20,000 soldiers, is seeking to discharge 79 of them. The Navy initially had suspended five sailors among the 10,000 personnel it reviewed. That review was expanded to about 20,000 and resulted in the suspension of 151, Lt. Cmdr. Chris Servello, a Navy spokesman, said Wednesday.

The "vast majority" of the 151 didn't receive the proper training or lacked certifications for duties involving sexual assault prevention and response, Servello said. Others had "issues" that made them inappropriate choices for the jobs, although nature of those problems was not clear Wednesday morning, Servello said. Some will receive the training and return to their posts; others will be reassigned.

It is also unclear how many sailors, if any, the Navy will seek to discharge from the service as a result of the review, Servello said.

The review and the suspensions reflect the priority the Navy has attached to fighting sexual assault and harassment in its ranks, said Cmdr. Ryan Perry, a spokesman. The B-minus student is no longer good enough for those posts, he said. "We want the best and brightest" for these positions.

Late Tuesday, Rep. Jackie Speier, D-Calif., sent a letter to Hagel calling on him to direct the services to follow the Army's lead in screening troops involved in sexual assault response and in the training of young recruits. Rear Adm. John Kirby, Hagel's spokesman, said the secretary recently had discussed the Army's approach to reviewing the records of its soldiers with leaders from the other services.

That discussion could result in the services revising the number of troops disqualified for positions of trust and may explain the Navy's increase. The Air Force, which previously had not suspended any airmen from positions of trust, reported Tuesday that two had been disqualified. The Marine Corps, after its review last summer, disqualified no one.

Speier, on Wednesday, questioned Marine Corps Commandant Gen. James Amos on how the Marines could find nobody who didn't qualify.

"I find that remarkable particularly since every other service has had at least a few," she said.

Amos agreed to review the Marines' screening process. He also said that Marine recruiters and sexual assault counselors are thoroughly vetted.

More In News

Start your day with a roundup of top defense news.

VA Home Loan
Rates

Search By:

Product Options:
Zip Code:

News for your in-box

Sign up now for free Military Times E-Reports. Choose from Money and Education. Subscribers: log in for premium e-newsletters.


This Week's Army Times

This Week's Army Times

The Army at 420K
One retired colonel is campaigning for more cuts -- and Congress is listening

Subscribe for Print or Digital delivery today!

Classifieds
MilitaryTimes Green Trusted Classifieds Looking to buy, sell and connect on Military Times?
Browse expanded listings across hundreds of military installations.
Faces of valorHonoring those who fought and died in Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom.
hall of valorThe Hall of Valor is a searchable database of valor award citations collected by Doug Sterner, a Vietnam veteran and Military Times contributing editor, and by Military Times staff.
Woman who cried rape
(3 replies)
   Last Post: TJMAC77SP
        May 3, 2014 1:32 PM
   Last Post: garhkal
        May 1, 2014 5:03 PM
Cliven Bundy
(45 replies)
   Last Post: Chief_KO
        Apr 26, 2014 9:49 AM
Handbooks

All you need to know about your military benefits.

Benefits handbook

Guard & Reserve All you need to know about the Guard & Reserve.

guard and reserve handbook