Colorado Springs military installations see growing number of reported sexual assaults

Reported sexual assaults at USA military installations worldwide increased from 2013 to 2016, with the most occurring in Army during the period, the Defense Department said a new report Friday.

In fiscal year 2016, there were a total of 199 reports at Fort Hood, making it the Army base with the largest number of reports.

The Army, the largest of the USA defense forces, had a total of 8,294 reported sexual assaults over the four fiscal years, The Hill reports. This means that the reports are referred for criminal investigation to either the Military Criminal Investigation Organization, or a civilian law enforcement agency.

Sexual assault victims who seek police involvement have unrestricted reports.

An unrestricted report is referred for investigation and the commanders of the service member who made it are notified as well as the alleged suspect or suspects.

Holding Army, Navy and Air Force units, Joint Base San Antonio had the most sexual assault reports of any joint base across the four-year period, with 881.

Sexual assault in the workplace. That number grew to 100 in 2014, 114 in 2015 and then 146 in 2016.

In a statement, Fort Bragg officials say that could be the reason, but they're also looking into population growth as possible reasons for higher amount of rapes reported on post.

Released in May of this year, the latest Pentagon survey of sexual assault in the military, which estimates the "prevalence" or rate of sexual assault, showed the estimated number of sexual assaults had decreased to 14,900 in 2016, down from the 20,300 measured in the last survey conducted in 2014. Brown said some cases are decades old but any reporting victim has access to counseling and medical attention while the report is investigated.

The summary notes that where a report was made does not necessarily mean the incident occurred at that location.

"One of the features of the department's reporting program is that service members can report allegations of sexual assault at any time and at any place", said Dr. Nate Galbreath, the deputy director of SAPRO. The incident could have occurred "while on deployment, while away on leave, or even prior to entering the military", the Pentagon said. The Air Force changed from 1,009 reports in 2015 to 1,043 in 2016, while the Navy went up from 1,243 in 2015 to 1,285 in 2016.

In a report listing the bases for each service, DoD's Sexual Assault and Prevention Office (SAPRO) said that Army installations received a total of 8,284 allegations of sexual assault from fiscal 2013 through fiscal 2016; the Navy, 4,788; the Marine Corps, 3,400; and the Air Force, 3,876.

  • Tracy Klein