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Ex-Air Force instructor who sexually assaulted trainees dies

Witnesses testified that the former staff sergeant was "sadistic and manipulative" and used his authority to obtain sexual favors from recruits.
By Aileen Graef Follow @AileenGraef Contact the Author   |   Sept. 3, 2014 at 12:11 PM

LEAVENWORTH, Kan., Sept. 3 (UPI) -- Former Air Force instructor Luis Walker, who was convicted of sexually assaulting up to 10 trainees, died Sunday while serving a 20-year sentence.

Walker, 28, was found Friday after hanging himself in his prison cell at the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks on Fort Leavenworth. He was taken to a hospital in Kansas City, Mo. where he died Sunday night.

Walker was an instructor in basic training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland where he had illicit relationships with as many as 10 women in training. Witnesses testified the former staff sergeant was "sadistic and manipulative" and used his authority to obtain sexual favors from recruits.

The Air Education and Training Command was notified of his death Tuesday.

"We are aware of Airman Basic Walker's passing and our thoughts are with the Walker family during this difficult time," Col. Sean McKenna told the San Antonio Express-News.

He was found guilty of seven charges and 28 specifications of misconduct, including rape, and was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

His case and the surrounding investigation exposed the widespread problem of rape culture and broken leadership in the U.S. military.

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