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CAMP HENRY, South Korea — A military policeman was sentenced to nine months in prison and a dishonorable discharge after being convicted of indecent assault and other charges in a general court-martial Thursday.

A five-member officer panel spent about three hours deliberating before acquitting Sgt. Carlos Salinas, 188th MP Company, of rape but finding him guilty of the lesser, indecent assault charge.

Salinas earlier had pled guilty to fraternization with another woman and guilty of two counts of adultery. He was found not guilty of a fourth charge: making false official statements.

The alleged rape victim, who reported the incident some five months after it was supposed to have occurred, testified Salinas assaulted her when she was in his barracks room. She could not recall a specific date. According to court documents, it occurred sometime between Dec. 15, 2006, and Jan. 20, 2007.

She said she was bent over Salina’s computer to look at some pictures when he approached her from behind, pulled down her shorts and underwear and had sexual contact before she could stand up, pull up her clothing and leave his room.

Defense attorneys painted the victim as a habitual liar, and called a string of witnesses, including three of her roommates and her company commander, who supported that contention.

Another member of the woman’s unit testified that she had asked him to lie to investigators if they asked about the incident.

The defense also called the woman’s husband, who gave testimony contrary to his wife’s. She claimed she waited to tell her husband she was raped until he had moved back to the Sates. Her husband, however, testified she had told him while he was still at Camp Carroll.

The alleged victim said the inconsistencies in her story were because memories of the event were painful.

“It hurts,” she said. “It reminds me of something I don’t want to remember.”

Salinas testified that he had had consensual sex with the woman in his room on two occasions, both initiated by her.

Prosecutors asked that Salinas be punished with four years’ confinement and a bad-conduct discharge.

Defense attorney Capt. Brian Tomasovic said such a sentence would be “drastic, vengeful and expensive punishment.”

He asked the panel to give Salinas no punishment, saying with a federal conviction, he would already be wearing a “scarlet letter.”

During the sentencing phase, the defense called the woman involved in Salinas’ guilty plea to fraternization.

“I would still work side-by-side with him,” she said. “That wouldn’t bother me.”

Salinas also gave an unsworn statement in which he asked the panel to consider what he already been through.

“I take full responsibility for my actions,” he said. “But I hope you realize I have suffered in the months leading up to this day. I have been embarrassed, humiliated and segregated.”

The maximum penalty Salinas could have received was eight years’ confinement and a dishonorable discharge.


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