Reports of Sexual assaults spike at military academies

Military Academies Sexual Assaults
FILE - This May 10, 2007 file photo shows the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. Reports of sexual assaults at the three military academies jumped by more than 50 percent in the 2014-15 school year, and complaints of sexual harassment also spiked, according to documents reviewed by The Associated Press. According to report documents reviewed by the AP, there were 91 reported sexual assaults over the last school year at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, and the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado — compared to 59 during the 2013-14 school year. (AP Photo/Kathleen Lange, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) – Documents reviewed by The Associated Press show that reports of sexual assaults at the three military academies surged by more than 50 percent in the 2014-15 school year. Complaints of sexual harassment also spiked during that period.

According to report documents, there were 91 reported sexual assaults at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York, and the U.S. Air Force Academy in Colorado.

That’s compared to 59 reported sexual assaults during the 2013-14 school year.

A senior defense official says the sharp increases were due largely to students’ growing confidence in the reporting system and expanded awareness programs.

Still, the dramatic increases raise questions about whether criminal assaults and harassment are on the rise.

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