The NewStandard ceased publishing on April 27, 2007.

Air Force Will Not Discipline Officers Accused in Assault Scandal

by Lisa Ashkenaz Croke

Mar. 29, 2005 – Acting US Air Force Secretary Peter B. Teets recommended this weekend that no action be taken against officials criticized for allowing sexual assault at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado. In a memo to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Teets wrote that the officials in question were not "intentionally or willfully derelict in their duties" and that the officers faced mitigating factors in their work, including "the complexity of the issues they faced, the necessity of policy trade-offs and compromises, and the difficulty of measuring program effectiveness."

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The recommendation against discipline perplexed lawmakers as two separate reports already held several active and retired Air Force officers responsible for the lack of response to female cadets’ accusations.

"We consider the overall root cause of sexual assault problems at the Air Force Academy to be the failure of successive chains of command over the last 10 years to acknowledge the severity of the problems," read a report from the Department of Defense’s Inspector General Joseph E. Schmitz in December.

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The NewStandard ceased publishing on April 27, 2007.

Lisa Ashkenaz Croke is a contributing journalist.

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