WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (Reuters) - A former U.S. Army prosecutor who supervised sexual assault cases has been found guilty by a military jury at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, of charges including rape, forcible sodomy and assault, the Army said in a statement.
Major Erik J. Burris, 39, was sentenced to 20 years in prison, dismissed from the service and ordered to forfeit all pay and allowances at the end of a court martial that concluded on Sunday, the military said.
The Army released few details about the case. His crimes occurred between 2010 and 2012 and involved multiple victims, Major Crystal Boring, a Fort Bragg spokeswoman, said on Tuesday.
She would not say whether any of the victims were fellow members of the service, saying it was against Army policy “to comment on information that may reveal the identities of sexual assault or minor victims.”
Burris told a California television station last year that the accusations against him were false and had been made by an estranged relative.
Burris had pleaded not guilty to all of the charges against him.
The Pentagon has cracked down on military sexual assault in recent years after a spate of high-profile incidents sparked public outrage and demands for action by the president and Congress.
At the time Burris was charged, he served as chief of military justice for the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, Boring said. The supervisory role included overseeing prosecutions of various types of cases, including sex crimes.
A court-martial panel this week found Burris guilty of two counts of rape, one count of forcible sodomy, four counts of assault and one count of disobeying an order from a superior commissioned officer.
He was found not guilty of charges including other alleged instances of assault, sexual assault, forcible sodomy and communicating a threat, the military said.
Reporting by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Sandra Maler