Sergeant sentenced to 33 months in prison for taking photos and pictures of women cadets

By Daniel S Levine,

A West Point sergeant has pleaded guilty to taking pictures and videotaping women cadets while they were in a locker room. He was sentenced 33 months of confinement.

Sgt. First Class Michael McClendon will have his rank reduced to private, then he will get a bad-conduct discharge from the Army after his prison sentence, the Army said on Thursday, reports The New York Times.

McClendon has been in the military since 1990 and assigned to work with cadets at West Point in 2009, notes The Associated Press. In 2013, he was charged with several counts related to the tapes, including mistreatment, dereliction of duty and taking videos of women naked or in states of undress. He had been transferred to Fort Drum.

The case was publicized in May, just as reports of sexual misconduct and assault in the military began to grow. New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand has been vocal on the cause and tried to get a bill passed through Congress that would strip authority figures of their ranks. However, the Senate failed to pass it as only 55 senators voted in favor. Sixty were needed to pass.

A recent Pentagon report found that 26,000 service members may have been assaulted in 2012 alone.

As for McClendon, by pleading guilty to a single charge with eight specifications of committing indecent acts, his sentence was reduced from five years to 33 months.



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