Lackland trainer gets 30 days

Aug. 2, 2012 at 8:07 PM

SAN ANTONIO, Aug. 2 (UPI) -- Christopher Smith, found guilty in a Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, sex scandal, was sentenced Thursday to a rank reduction and 30 days in a military lockup.

Before his sentencing, Smith, a 33-year-old tech sergeant, pleaded not to be expelled from the Air Force, saying, "I know I can tough out any punishment you give me, but a bad-conduct discharge mark I will never overcome," the San Antonio News-Express reported.

Smith, a former basic training instructor, was found guilty Wednesday on two of four counts of seeking an intimate relationship with a trainee. He has been demoted to Airman First Class.

A 19-year-old trainee testified Wednesday Smith sneaked her and another trainee off-base for an unwanted sexual rendezvous.

The woman, identified only as Airman 1, told the jury hearing Smith's court-martial she had looked up to Smith as a father figure and was very uncomfortable during the incident.

"All I could do was look down at my hands because I was just trying to figure out how to get out of that situation," she said.

Smith's sentence was considerably less than the maximum 12 months in prison and bad-conduct discharge he faced.

Similar sexual intimidation accusations have been leveled against 15 basic training instructors at the base, the newspaper said.

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