SecAf: 'I Have A Greater Respect' for Sen. Martha McSally After Disclosure

Senator Martha Mc Sally speaking at a Senate Armed Service Committee hearing on sex assaults in the military

Senator Martha Mc Sally speaking at a Senate Armed Service Committee hearing on sex assaults in the military

McSally said she didn't report the assault at the time, citing a reason that many survivors of sexual assault use to explain why they do not turn to authorities.

Ms McSally, 52, was speaking on Wednesday during a hearing of the Senate Armed Services subcommittee featuring victims of sexual assault.

"I really felt like the system victimized me again", she said.

Air Force spokeswoman Captain Carrie Volpe said in a statement: "We are appalled and deeply sorry for what Senator McSally experienced and we stand behind her and all victims of sexual assault".

Martha McSally, US senator and freshman Republican from Arizona, has dsiclosed that she was "preyed upon and raped by a superior officer" while she served in the military.

Asked if she had "confidence in the system right now", McSally said: "We have a lot of work to do".

"I just felt like I wanted it to go away, like so many people who have been through it". "It's very hard to put myself back into the shoes of where I was at the time".

"The perpetrators use their positions of power in profound ways".

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She also said she nearly left the air force after 18 years, adding that "like many victims, I felt like the system was raping me all over again".

Senator Martha McSally (R-AZ) vented over how her sexual assault claim was handled during her time with the Air Force in an interview with CBS that aired Friday.

Senator Kristen Gillibrand of NY, the top ranking Democrat on the committee, said she was "deeply affected by that testimony".

When other sexual assault and harassment scandals within the service began coming to light, she discussed her own assault with others, but said she wasn't taken seriously. Because that predator is going to go assault someone else.

She has previously said she was sexually harassed while in the military.

McSally lost a close race in November to Democrat Kyrsten Sinema but was later appointed by the Arizona governor to fill the seat once held by John McCain, who died in August. An attorney for her former husband declined to comment at the time.

It said the Pentagon received 6,769 reports of sexual assault involving service members as either victims or subjects of criminal investigation.

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