Commentary

April 18, 2014

Sexual Assault Awareness Month: OSI’s perspective

Tags:
Special Agent Andrea O'Connor
Air Force OSI, Det. 111 commander

sarc-osi
Sexual assault is a problem that affects our entire society, especially our Air Force.

The Air Force Office of Special Investigations’ role in combating sexual assault includes conducting thorough investigations and providing commanders and the legal team with information to help them make decisions and take appropriate legal action.

Unlike the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator and Chaplain’s Office, which offer confidentiality and restricted reporting to individuals who have experienced a sexual assault, AFOSI is a law enforcement agency and a mandatory reporter. This means AFOSI must investigate any allegations of sexual assault that come to our attention. While the idea of having to speak with someone about such an event can be daunting, please know AFOSI takes pride in treating individuals who report sexual assault with compassion and respect. We work closely with the SARC, the Chaplain and the Legal Office in this regard.

While there are many understandable reasons why an individual may wish to cope with sexual assault trauma without involving others, please consider the following: often times the path to recovery comes from seeking justice and ensuring an offender is no longer able to inflict pain upon others. Many times AFOSI receives information about sexual assaults in which we later find out the offender had past victims who did not speak up. Providing a statement to AFOSI ensures there is a lasting record, which cannot be diminished by passage of time. For many individuals, being part of the investigative process and seeking justice is one powerful step towards recovery.

On a practical, positive note, there have been advances in forensic science and technology, which allow us to collect evidence in increasingly sophisticated manners. If you know or suspect you have been sexually assaulted, please DO NOT destroy, wash, or discard items of clothing or bedding you have in your possession. Also, please note that working with either AFOSI and/or the SARC to accomplish a sexual assault examination kit can be one of the single most useful items available to successfully document, investigate and prosecute the crime.

If you have any questions about AFOSI’s investigative process, or our organization in general, do not hesitate to stop by†Edwards AFB AFOSI Det. 111 in Bldg. 2810.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Overcoming failures

You will fail. The question is, how will you respond? This reminds me of a parable of the carrot, egg and coffee. A senior airman was distraught when he learned he did not make staff sergeant after his first time testing. His staff sergeant supervisor saw a teaching opportunity and the next day he filled...
 
 

Lessons learned in protecting social media accounts

On a Saturday afternoon in late November, I was informed about a political remark that appeared on my Director of Public Affairs Twitter feed. A staff member called to ask if I was aware of the re-tweet. At the time, I was on leave, out of the state, tending to my daughter who had had...
 
 

Through our character – an opportunity to reflect on important issues in our community

- As stated last week, the Atlantic Monthly ran an article contrasting two sets of virtues: “resume virtues” and “eulogy virtues.” The goal of the article was to provide motivation for others in order to create a “counterculture” to our power, wealth and achievement culture. In the author’s words, we need to become people who...
 

 

My journey as a victim advocate

When I was a teenager, I saw a movie about a college student who was raped by her brother’s fraternity brother at a party. I remember being saddened by what happened to her; not only by the act of sexual assault, but by how the school’s administrators and students treated her when she decided to...
 
 

Lessons learned in protecting social media accounts

On a Saturday afternoon in late November, I was informed about a political remark that appeared on my Director of Public Affairs Twitter feed. A staff member called to ask if I was aware of the re-tweet. At the time, I was on leave, out of the state, tending to my daughter who had had...
 
 

Gaining Altitude – Growth Opportunities for the Week

Through our character – an opportunity to reflect on important issues in our community - This past year the Atlantic Monthly ran an article contrasting two sets of virtues: “resume virtues” and “eulogy virtues.” The article explained that resume virtues are oriented toward “accumulating power, wealth, and professional achievements.” Eulogy virtues on th...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>