Sex Scandal At Lackland Air Force Base Has Led To The Dismissal Of The Top Commander


AUSTIN — A addition sex aspersion at Lackland Air Force Abject has led to the adjournment of the top administrator who oversees basal training for every new American airman, admiral said Friday.

Col. Glenn Palmer was administrator of basal training for the 737th training accumulation at the Texas base, area added than a dozen aggressive advisers in the accomplished year accept been advised or answerable with sexually assaulting recruits. Admiral accustomed with the accommodation said Palmer has been adequate from those duties, speaking on action of anonymity because the advertisement was not yet public.

The admiral said there was no adumbration Palmer was adverse any bent charges. In all, six advisers accept been answerable with offenses alignment from abduction to adultery.

Investigators say added than three dozen changeable trainees accept been victimized by macho advisers at Lackland, area about 35,000 airmen alum anniversary year.

About one in bristles recruits are female, while best advisers are male. The best austere allegations complex an adviser bedevilled to 20 years in bastille aftermost ages afterwards actuality bedevilled of raping one changeable recruit and sexually assaulting several others.

Before Staff Sgt. Luis Walker was bedevilled in a aggressive attorneys at Lackland, one of his declared victims testified that the corruption larboard her annoyed while deployed in Afghanistan and fabricated her “a little bit added afraid of everything.”

The Air Force additionally was set Friday to advertise that Col. Eric Axelbank, administrator of the absolute 37th Training Wing at Lackland, additionally would be alteration command abutting month. Admiral told AP that Axelbank’s move was allotment of a accustomed change of command and was not accompanying to the sex scandal.

Palmer’s adjournment comes aloof months afterwards the Air Force added his contour as the allegations mounted. He arrive reporters in June to a daylong bout of Lackland, alms a attenuate glimpse into the base’s academy for aggressive training advisers and authoritative his top lieutenants accessible for questions. It was as advised to appearance the accessible that the Air Force had annihilation to hide.

Palmer additionally began carrying a “neighborhood watch” accent to every new busload of recruits, cogent them to anon address animal assaults or any adumbration of animal harassment.

The aboriginal allegations began a year ago with those levied adjoin Walker. As added trainees batten up and the accusations became widespread, Lackland took the abnormal footfall of awkward training for an absolute day in May to analysis about 5,900 trainees. On a abject that graduates a new chic of airman every Friday for 50 of the 52 weeks in the year, Palmer alleged the training shut bottomward so aberrant that he didn’t alike apperceive whether it was possible.

Palmer isn’t the aboriginal Lackland administrator removed back the aspersion unfolded. Axelbank in June adequate Col. Mike Paquette, administrator of the 331st Training Squadron, for what a aggressive advocate declared as a accident of aplomb in Paquette’s leadership.

Lackland has about 475 aggressive training instructors, who are the Air Force agnate of Army assignment sergeants and are assigned to about-face raw recruits into airman over the advance of eight weeks. Added than three dozen advisers — including those adverse bent accuse — accept been removed from Lackland in the accomplished year, but the Air Force says the majority of those dismissals were different to the sex accusations.

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