[Editor’s Note: The sexual harassment and adultery anonymously reported from CAP’s HQ on Maxwell AFB in May of 2009 and again just recently is just the tip of the blue iceberg in Air Force culture.]
In September 2015, a female victim in her 30s at Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base in Alabama reported that her married boss, Col. Ronald S. Jobo, had tracked her movements, made sexual advances to her, and sent her recordings of him masturbating in the shower. She alleged that he also trapped her in the office, and forcibly attempted to kiss her while holding her arms.
Air Force investigators easily confirmed much of her story, because there were hundreds of text messages and he admitted that he had sent the masturbation recordings.
Investigators ruled that he had committed abusive sexual contact against the woman. Under the UCMJ, the charge would automatically lead to a court-martial, a proceeding that would be open to the public. The crime also carried a sentence of up to seven years in prison and a requirement to register as a sex offender.
However, Lt. Gen. John F. Thompson decided against charging Jobo with abusive sexual contact, or any crime at all. Thompson imposed nonjudicial punishment, or discipline for minor offenses. Jobo was forced to retire and demoted one rank, to lieutenant colonel. Because the military keeps most disciplinary actions secret, the case was hidden from public view.
There would be no trial, no publicity and no public record — the same for thousands of other sexual assault investigations each year in the armed forces.