House members push bill on military sexual assault

Wednesday - 5/8/2013, 5:10pm EDT

DONNA CASSATA
Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A House Republican and Democrat are pushing a bill that would strip the authority of military officers to overturn convictions for major offenses such as sexual assault.

Republican Rep. Mike Turner of Ohio and Democratic Rep. Niki Tsongas of Massachusetts plan to introduce the bill on Wednesday. A version of the measure is likely to be included in the sweeping defense policy bill that the House considers this summer.

The legislation comes just a day after the Pentagon estimated that up to 26,000 military members may have been sexually assaulted last year but fewer than 3,400 reported the incident.

Lawmakers have been outraged after an Air Force officer overturned the conviction in a sexual assault case.

The Associated Press obtained an advance copy of the legislation.


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