As the No Man alerted me earlier today, this article from yesterday’s San Diego Union-Tribune has been receiving quite a bit of attention.  Rick Rogers, Reporting of military sex crimes seen rising, Union Tribune, Aug. 10, 2009.  Here is the article’s key finding:

The San Diego Union-Tribune reviewed the military court docket covering most sailors and Marines in the western United States, including those stationed in San Diego County, and found the number of sexual-assault courts-martial between Oct. 1, 2007, and Sept. 30, 2008, went up by about 14 percent compared with the same period a year earlier.

Based on the pace of sexual-assault trials from Oct. 1, 2008, through Friday, there could be another 14 percent increase year over year.

Not included in the analysis were cases tried in civilian courts.

4 Responses to “San Diego Union-Tribune finds 14% annual rise in West Coast DON sexual assault courts-martial”

  1. Cloudesley Shovell says:

    The article doesn’t say anything about the methodology, but gives away one possible reason for the “increase” in sexual assault cases. Namely, that Art. 120 changed to cover many more offenses that used to come under Art. 134.

    I’d be interested in more information. If this was just a “how many cases include an Art. 120 charge” counting exercise, I don’t think the change in numbers is anything meaningful. It would also be interesting to see more than three years of numbers.

  2. Anon says:

    It would also be interesting to see the conviction rate.

  3. Charlie Gittins says:

    I think the rise in court-martial numbers is largely a function of commanders lacking the guts to dismiss charges in weak cases. Commanders are sending cases to trial now to give them “cover” with the feminist lobby when such cases that had little chance of conviction were routinely (and properly) dismissed when I started practice. I suspect that the conviction rate has not increased by 14%, but this is based on my own perceptions speaking with military counsel around the country.

  4. Angela Ehlers says:

    My husband is one of those 14%. If the DON and NCIS had bothered to do their jobs by properly investigating the allegations (for example-Petty officer lying about taking child to naval hospital for treatment, mother of child telling child to blame my husband in front of witness, child accusing my husband’s ex-wife of witnessing sexual assault then recanting testimony at trial, etc) he would not be locked up for the next 19 years. You have to thank Major Kasprzyk, the judge presiding over the trial (and viewing childs origional “story” on video and subsiquent recantation at trial, impeaching mother’s statements at trial) for the conviction. It’s not politically correct to call a child a liar, but some are told to lie to protect their father’s obsession with small children and the Navy has no problem covering this fact because he’s a religious program specialist. We can thank NCIS for not going to the FAP, violation DoD Directive 6400.1 and also not having the local police involved. To top it off, we have to thank Major Plummer (ATC), the OIC of LSS at Camp Pendleton for 1. not reporting this fraud when it was brought to his attention in April 2008 and 2. for denying everything to an attorney later when confronted. Plummer, being in violation of the JAGINST 6495.01 himself, and Capt Ellis (TC) who got yelled at by the judge a lot but still pulled off the win on his first real case right out of law school. I can’t forget Lt Melocowsky, the DDC who didn’t want to take the case in the first place because he was going to be working in DC soon and didn’t want the burden. Bravo to them all, and the laws they were allowed to break to get a conviction!!!!! These people should not be allowed near a court room or even out associating with the general population.