KRDO NewsChannel 13 has learned that three Air Force Academy cadets have been charged with sex crimes.
The first male cadet, Robert Evenson Jr., (Class of 2011) has three charges preferred against him. Charge 1 has one specification of violating Article 92, engaging in an unprofessional relationship; charge 2 has four specifications of violating Article 120, rape, aggravated sexual contact, and indecent acts; charge 3 is a violation of Article 133, conduct unbecoming an officer.
A second male cadet, Kyle Cressy, (Class of 2012) has 1 charge with 2 specifications preferred against him for violation of Article 120, aggravated sexual assault. An Air Force representative says Cressy engaged in sexual contact with a female in May 2011 while she was substantially incapacitated.
The third male cadet, Stephan Claxton, (Class of 2013) has four charges preferred against him. Charge 1 has one specification of an attempt to engage in misconduct that would be a violation of Article 120, abusive sexual contact; charge 2 has one specification of violating Article 92, underage drinking; charge 3 is a violation of Article 120, abusive sexual contact; charge 4 has three specifications of violating Article 128, assault.
"The alleged misconduct in each of the three cases is unrelated, it occurred at different times over the last fifteen months, and Academy officials received victims' reports at various times. The fact that the charges in all three cases are being preferred at this time is due to the near simultaneous completion of each individual investigation," said Col. Tamra Rank, the Academy's vice superintendent.
"Each case will be adjudicated independently and the accused in each case is presumed innocent until proven guilty," she said. "We take these allegations seriously. Sexual misconduct is a particularly egregious offense and we have a zero tolerance policy in the Air Force."
Counsel for the government and defense are working on the dates and times for an Article 32 hearing for each case, which will most likely be late January or early February. An Article 32 hearing is equivalent to a civilian grand jury proceeding. An investigating officer (typically a Judge Advocate) presides over an Article 32 hearing, and submits his or her report of the proceedings to the Superintendent, who is the installation general court martial convening authority. The Superintendent will then decide if the case will go to trial.
"We expect the best from our cadets, and do not tolerate unacceptable behaviors," Rank said.
We are working to get more information and will bring it to you on KRDO.com and NewsChannel 13.