Fort Hood officer to face trial by court martial

August 22, 2014 - 8:34 PM

FORT HOOD, Texas (AP) — A noncommissioned sexual abuse prevention officer at Fort Hood accused of operating a prostitution ring will be court martialed, the central Texas Army base said Friday.

Sgt. 1st Class Gregory McQueen's case will be tried in a general court martial, reserved for the military's most serious cases, and he will face a military judge and at least five military court members acting as a jury.

The attorney who previously represented McQueen told The Associated Press that the soldier will now be presented by military attorneys. Fort Hood officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment about McQueen's legal representation.

Initial charges were filed in March against McQueen alleging 21 criminal charges including pandering, adultery and sexual assault.

Another soldier at the Army base in central Texas, Master Sgt. Brad Grimes, was already demoted and reprimanded in the case for conspiring to patronize a prostitute and solicitation to commit adultery.

During a June hearing, two soldiers said that McQueen recruited them and other cash-strapped female soldiers to join a prostitution ring.

A private testified that McQueen arranged for her to have sex with Grimes for $100.

The lieutenant general who presided over the hearing consulted McQueen's chain of command and the case's investigating officer before recommending that McQueen stand trial, according to Fort Hood.

A trial date has not been set.

The case has brought renewed focus on the prevalence of sexual assault within the military. In March, the U.S. Senate blocked a bill that would have stripped military commanders of their authority to prosecute or prevent charges for alleged rapes and other serious offenses.