Two Cadets Face Court Martial for Sexual Assaults

Discussion in 'Coast Guard Academy - USCGA' started by Freda'sMom, Sep 10, 2016.

  1. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006 10-Year Member

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    In reading the article, it wasn't clear to me that they were caught on school grounds, but it was instead discovered during the investigation (I would assume during interviews).

    That's a little harder to prove that walking in on a cadet snorting a line.

    I don't think it would be a simple dismissal if the investigation wasn't from a year before and not observed.
     
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  2. BR2011

    BR2011 10-Year Member

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    Been a while since I've been on here, but I'll chime in a few of these topics.

    Firstly, the standard practice that I've seen concerning 'simple' drug use has been to go with the fastest route to dismissal, often foregoing court martial to get the member out of the service as quickly as possible. So there is quite a bit of truth in Freda's claim.

    Secondly, on the earlier topic of where to hold the trial (court martial or civilian criminal court), I'm sure that both entities discussed it heavily and based on a variety of conclusions decided to go with court martial (you can't be tried for the same crime in both courts) I imagine it heavily depended on
    1. The probability of conviction in a court martial
    2. Ability to add extra charges that would not apply in civilian court
    3. Punishments available upon convicition
    4. Cost
    5. Public affairs/visibility

    Finally, concerning banning alcohol and the perceived 'cause' of sexual assault. trackandfield is spot on. Sexual assault has been shown time and time again to be a crime of power made by predators with pre-thought plans to exploit what they see as someone else's weakness. The idea that generally outstanding people have too much to drink and then mistakenly commit these crimes is simply not true. Alcohol definitely provides an avenue for exploitation, but there are plenty of others. Having a position of power, taking advantage of someone that trusts them, taking advantage of someone with known credibility or performance issues, taking advantage of someone who has a reputation of sleeping around, the list goes on. The fact is that the predator exists first, then finds a way to exploit the victim. Placing blame on the situation just deflects it away from where it should lie, on the person who commits the crime.
     
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  3. Freda'sMom

    Freda'sMom 5-Year Member

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    A member of the Coast Guard Academy’s Class of 2016 will serve one year in prison after he was found guilty of a sexual assault charge.

     
  4. Wishful

    Wishful "Land of the free, because of the brave..." 5-Year Member

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    In the police academy, I was taught to never blame the victim of a sexual assault. And that was a long time ago...
     
  5. Alaskan

    Alaskan Member

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    Do you actually believe that there is a place in the world where bad things don't happen? Honor, Integrity,Devotion to Duty is each individuals responsibility. It's a big bad world out there, corruption exists in every facet of life, be it the church, government, business etc.. You can't hide under your bed and shouldn't blame an institution for it, unless they condone it, which in this case isn't true.
     
  6. Alaskan

    Alaskan Member

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    Well, it's an age old drug of choice and rooted in culture.
     
  7. MMA19kid

    MMA19kid Banned

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    I'm glad I don't have the strictness of the Coast Guard's disciplinary side. The Merchant Marine Academy's discipline system is basically nothing compared to the USCGA's. People here leave campus without permission all the time, because that's just 50 demerits/3-6 weeks restriction. And alcohol on campus is 100 demerits/8-10 weeks restriction.

    I bet either of those two things could be an automatic kick out at the USCGA.
     
  8. MMA19kid

    MMA19kid Banned

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    Once again, it's, "Honor, Respect, and Devotion to Duty."
     
  9. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006 10-Year Member

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    CGA cadets are subject to UCMJ too, which has somethings civilian laws wouldn't touch on.

    I don't know how the regulations for each school compare, but it gets incredibly easier to get kicked out the more senior you become (as more is expected of you).
     
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  10. MMA19kid

    MMA19kid Banned

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    Yeah, that's not really the case here. The administration is seemingly less likely to kick out a 1/C whom they've invested 3+ years in than a 4/C. But it makes sense the Coast Guard does that though, because they actually commission every grad. The Merchant Marine Academy cuts them loose on graduation day.
     
  11. Wishful

    Wishful "Land of the free, because of the brave..." 5-Year Member

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    Don't you still owe the SA for your education (after commitment) if you get kicked out? I think SA's have no problem kicking a 1/C out. IMHO, it sends a message to the wing & the former cadet still has to pay back the $ or enlist.
     
  12. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    1/C have been there 3+ years and are months from reporting to their first duty stations and leading others in many cases. The standard is higher for them. Regardless of the investment, a SA really evaluates if this person is ready and capable of leading others. The standard is higher each year you progress. And yes, they would owe if kicked out from their 2/C year and beyond.
     
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  13. Mlt852

    Mlt852 Member

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    t
    As someone in the business, these cases are notoriously difficult to prove in civilian courts, especially once people begin the voluntary consumption of alcohol or other controlled substances. Universities and the service academies have responded with administrative rules that consent after the consumption of alcohol is not valid, so while an "offender" may not be criminally liable, they can still be dismissed from the institution for violating rules. Alcohol is known to lower a person's inhibitions (e.g. I've never seen a karaoke machine at a party of sober people), but when do the lowered inhibitions result in a non-consensual encounter is a difficult matter to determine. It is further complicated when false allegations of sexual assault are filed, it further inhibits the pursuit of justice for the real victims.
     
  14. MMA19kid

    MMA19kid Banned

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    I guess things are just less strict in general here. We had one case last year where a couple of 1/C told two plebes to pie another 1/C in the face at a dinner with the supe/a few politicians. They got a bunch of demerits/restriction but I think that wouldve definitely been a kick out at USCGA.
     
  15. trackandfield08

    trackandfield08 USCGA 2014 10-Year Member

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    Not necessarily for that type of prank. Cadets pull them all of the time, especially during the week before the CGA/KP game. A lot of the action taken depends on the Commandant of Cadets and Asst. Commandant of Cadets and how they want to handle things. When I was a cadet, if this had happened, I doubt it would have meant disenrollment. It potentially would have meant some demerits, a tour or two and a some restriction.

    That being said, there's a big difference between throwing a pie in a cadet's face and assaulting other people or smoking dope/spice (in the case of some of my ex-classmates) and snorting coke (in the case of a few 2012ers). Look at it this way, cadets are studying to be officers in the service that carries out the daily mission of drug interdiction to keep drugs off the streets of the US. Why would you ever think that smoking a joint would result in any other action but disenrollment? It reflects badly on the entire service when the news headline comes out. USCGA has to be strict because we are expected to lead and "lead by example in both word and deed" as my new CO puts it. I had a classmate get kicked out two days before graduation for weight. His dad was the President of the Parent's Association and had to attend the Commencement Ceremony and sit on the stage, knowing his son wouldn't be walking across it.
     
  16. MMA19kid

    MMA19kid Banned

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    That's interesting. I know of a person from the KP class of 16 who is still here because he hasn't passed the physical fitness test yet. Does the USCGA graduate people who are NPQ (not physically qualified) for commissioning with just the degree at all?
     
  17. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006 10-Year Member

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    I've only seen it done once in 2003, and there's a chance that it wasn't the PFE holding him back but weight standards (or I could be completely wrong about why the guy graduated later).

    I've seen 1/c cadets kicked out for failing the PFE.
     
  18. LurkingQuietly

    LurkingQuietly Member

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    The general rule is never talk to the police in an "interrogation" setting without a lawyer. I think CGIS gets paid by the body, so anytime you're questioned, you probably should ask for counsel. CGIS interviewed a lot of cadets for these 2 cases. (I'm pretty sure there are other cadets still to be masted)

    I know you can ask for counsel under UCMJ, but shouldn't a cadet ask especially for a crime this serious in nature? (I'm not asking about cadets that were directly involved in the case, that goes without saying.)
     
  19. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006 10-Year Member

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    Up to the cadet of he/she wants to request counsel. I'd assume they receive a Miranda/Tempia warnings.
     
  20. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Super Moderator 5-Year Member

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    Yes if a Cadet or Mid is brought in for questioning they are given the military's version of their rights.

    Also there is a big difference between pranks and misconduct. Learning the correct place and time to do pranks is important. Sometimes Mids and Cadets push and even cross that line. 90% of the time that would not lead to a dismissal from a SA, but it could be lead to a long time on restriction and many miles marched.

    It is rare for a USNA Midn to graduate and not commission. If they do, its 99% of the time medical related. Most years there are 1-5 Mids who fall in this category that either had a traumatic injury, developed a major health issue such as Crones, Diabetes or cancer. If a Mid doesn't meet weight standards or pass the PRT they won't graduate. If it routinely happens early in their career they could be dismissed at any point while at USNA. They will be dismissed without their diploma. I had a classmate thrown out grad week our firstie year for conduct. My old neighbors were both USNA grads. Their daughter was thrown out grad week. My squad leader was thrown out in April before he graduated and sent to the fleet.