posted by August 8 at 13:21 PMon
[Cassandra Hernandez, a female Air Force airman in Texas] said she was attacked in another airman’s barracks room the night of May 12, 2006, and was partially clothed when she fled the room. She said she reported the incident and received a medical examination.
In her letter, she also said the three male airmen were charged with rape but the charges were dropped after she refused to testify. The woman said she was questioned by the men’s defense lawyer without her victim’s advocate present, which her lawyers said was a violation of military justice policy.
“The pressure of the judicial process was too much for me, and I felt like no one was looking out for my interests,” the woman wrote.
In other words, the woman was raped by three men. She reported the rape. Subsequently, without an attorney present, she was intimidated by superior officers into not testifying. As a result, she was court-martialed for committing “indecent acts” with the three men, with an additional punishment for underage drinking (which she acknowledges, but come on).
But don’t feel bad for her—after all, she was asking for it. In a subsequent statement to the victim’s attorneys, one of the three men said Hernandez had invited the attack because she wore “skin tight” clothes and danced in a “promiscuous way,” whatever that means.
If convicted, Hernandez could face up to a year in jail, reduction in rank, a pay cut, and a possible bad conduct discharge, and could be required to register as a sex offender. The men, meanwhile, have been granted immunity from all sexual assault charges in exchange for agreeing to testify against the woman.
In lieu of intervention by Hernandez’s representatives in Congress or Texas Gov. Rich Perry, her court-martial trial will begin September 24.