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Report | July 9, 2013

Evaluation of the Military Criminal Investigative Organizations Sexual Assault Investigations



We evaluated the Military Criminal Investigative Organizations’ (MCIOs’) sexual assault investigations completed in 2010 to determine whether they completed investigations as required by DoD, Military Service, and MCIO guidance. Our evaluation focused on the following question:

Did the MCIOs investigate sexual assaults as required by guiding policies and procedures?


  • Most MCIO investigations (89 percent) met or exceeded the investigative standards.
  • We returned cases with significant deficiencies (11 percent) to the MCIOs for corrective action.
  • Although 83 cases had no deficiencies, most of the remaining investigations had deficiencies that were not deemed significant.
  • The U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID) and Air Force Office of Special Investigations (AFOSI) policy guidance does not direct the collection of clothing articles that a victim or suspect might have placed on themselves shortly after the assault, if different from the clothing worn during the assault.
  • Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) policy does not require NCIS investigators to notify or coordinate with their servicing judge advocate(s) upon initiating an investigation.
  • CID guidance regarding records checks does not provide a definitive timeliness requirement. NCIS policy on this topic needs improvement.
  • NCIS needs policy to require Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) notifications and documentation.


  • The Director and Commanders of the MCIOs implement measures to improve crime scene processing, evidence collection, supervision, and documentation to reduce investigative deficiencies.
  • The Commanders of CID and AFOSI evaluate their existing policies regarding the collection of clothing worn by suspects and victims subsequent to a sexual assault.
  • The Director of NCIS evaluate current policy regarding the timely notification and coordination with servicing judge advocates upon the initiation of sexual assault cases, as well as the continued coordination with the servicing judge advocates until final case disposition.
  • The Commander of CID and Director of NCIS evaluate existing policy guidance regarding the timely completion of records checks.
  • The Director of NCIS implement policy requiring SARC notifications and documentation.


Overall, the Commander, CID, agreed with our recommendations. The Director, NCIS, and the Commander, AFOSI, agreed in part with our recommendations, but objected to our assessment in a number of areas in the report. See the recommendations table on the next page.

Recommendations Table


Recommendations Requiring Comment

No Additional Comments Required

The Director and Commanders of the Military Criminal Investigative Organizations


1, 2.a, 3.a, 3.b, and 3.c

The Commander, U.S. Army Criminal Investigation Command



The Director, Naval Criminal Investigative Service

7 and 9

2.b, 4, 5, 6.a, 6.b, and 8

The Commander, Air Force Office of Special Investigations


2.b, 2.c, 4, 6.a, and 6.b




This report is a result of Project No. 2011C019.