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Sergeant Found Guilty of Cheating on Air Force Fitness Test

A staff sergeant at Peterson Air Force Base, in Colorado Springs, CO, has been found guilty of cheating on her physical fitness test.

According to a statement from the base, the sergeant tried to bribe a subordinate in her unit to give her a passing score after she failed the test in May 2010. During the sergeant’s court-martial in August, the subordinate, a physical training leader, testified that she refused the bribe but felt coerced into falsifying the score for her superior.

The sergeant, whose name was not released, was convicted of making a false statement but found not guilty of bribery. She has been demoted to senior airman and sentenced to 14 days of hard labor without confinement. The subordinate received an undisclosed administrative punishment for changing the score.

“The integrity of our fitness program before the establishment of the fitness assessment cell depended on the integrity of each individual military member,” Capt. Jacob Marshall, the prosecutor in the case, said in the base’s statement. “The staff sergeant admitted a failure of that individual integrity led to the failure of the fitness program, and the Air Force does not take that lightly. Her conviction and sentence are evidence of that.”

The sergeant’s sentence is still to be approved by the convening authority (the panel that serves as judge in military trials). If it stands, she will become a lifelong federal convict.

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