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The Senate Has Requested that the Pentagon’s Watchdog Investigate the Handling of Abuse Allegations Against an Army Doctor

Credits: Air Force Times

Senator Elizabeth Warren has requested an investigation by the Pentagon’s inspector general into whether the military failed to support alleged victims of sexual assault in the case of Army doctor Maj. Michael Stockin.

Stockin, a pain management anesthesiologist at Madigan Army Medical Center at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in Washington, has been charged with 48 counts of abusive sexual contact and five counts of indecent viewing under the military code of justice. All of the 42 alleged victims in the case are men.

Ryan Guilds, who represents seven of the alleged victims, has criticized the Army’s handling of the case, stating that his clients have not been properly supported or provided with victims’ resources, including access to legal services.

US Senate Official (Credits: mearildeic)

Guilds have raised concerns that more than half of the alleged victims in the Stockin case appear to have no legal representation. The Army’s Office of Special Trial Counsel, which is prosecuting Stockin’s case, has stated that they are committed to supporting victims throughout the court-martial process and keeping them informed of the status of their case.

The Army has declined to comment on the appeals by advocates, citing the ongoing litigation. Senator Warren’s spokesperson stated that she is committed to ensuring the Department of Defense meets its obligations to survivors of sexual misconduct.

The Defense Department Office of Inspector General confirmed that they have received an informational referral from Senator Warren’s office and are reviewing it.

The case highlights the challenges faced by male service members in reporting sexual assault, as studies have shown that active-duty male service members are far less likely to report their experiences than their female counterparts. Only one in ten male service members reportedly do so, based on data from 2021.

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