NCO convicted of sexually assaulting two soldiers
May 12, 2007
CAMP CASEY, South Korea — A senior noncommissioned officer faces up to 20 years in prison after a jury found him guilty Thursday night of indecently assaulting two of his female soldiers — a private and a specialist — and obstruction of justice.
The jury found Sgt. 1st Class Carlos Reynolds not guilty of raping a private in her friend’s barracks room last July, but concluded he pinned her to the bed and committed the lesser crime of sexual assault.
Reynolds, acting first sergeant with the 2nd Infantry Division’s 302nd Brigade Support Battalion, Foxtrot Company, also was found not guilty of soliciting the private to have sex for money.
On June 22, Reynolds walked into a room where the private was talking with two other female soldiers. He said in an official statement that he left with one of the other females and left the private alone.
However, the other two females said Reynolds stayed behind. Reynolds’ obstruction-of-justice conviction was for asking one of the females to swear that he left the room with her.
“In order to believe [Reynolds’] testimony, you would have to discount the testimony of every government witness who was there,” prosecutor Capt. Marlin Paschal said.
The private said Reynolds stayed in the room and pinned her to the bed. He removed her clothing, then penetrated her part of the way before being interrupted by a phone call, she said.
The private waited until the next month to report the crime out of fear, she said. Because of the time lag, no physical evidence remained.
Defense attorneys Maj. Robert Kincaid and Maj. Karen Riddle scrutinized the private’s trustworthiness throughout the trial. The private’s direct supervisor testified the woman was a habitual liar. Other witnesses agreed.
“The only thing that is consistent in this case are the inconsistencies,” Kincaid said. “They are all over the place in this case.”
The private’s statements conflicted about whether she was penetrated, according to court records. She also gave a description of Reynolds’ body that turned out to be inaccurate, according to testimony.
She said she had not been stripped of her rank as a result of non-judicial punishment last year, but eyewitnesses later refuted that.
Paschal argued that the private could not be expected to remember all details through the shock of the assault. Looking at the big picture, the private “has been painfully consistent in the way she described her attack,” Paschal said.
Defense lawyers also questioned the consistency of a specialist who said Reynolds sexually assaulted her in an orderly room while they were alone July 5.
The specialist said in an investigatory hearing that she did not get pregnant in Korea. At the trial, she said she did, according to court records. She also contradicted her testimony on whether she spoke with a victim advocate.
Paschal argued that the specialist wouldn’t make up a story about a man she previously considered an “awesome NCO.”
The specialist, however, said in court records that her feelings changed when he called repeatedly after the assault to say “he didn’t like snitches and he didn’t like nobody diming him out.”
Sentencing was set for Friday morning.