Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin signaled to lawmakers Thursday that he supports stripping commanding officers of the authority to decide whether troops accused of sexual assault should face prosecution, NBC News reports.
A shift to place such decisions in the hands of independent legal authorities would amount to a sea change in the way the military handles sexual assault cases.
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Austin plans to make his recommendation to President Joe Biden in the coming weeks, according to a defense official.
“As I have said before, what we are doing is not working and we need to fix it,” Austin said in testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee.