Signs point to shift in combating sexual assault in military

WASHINGTON (AP) — Momentum is building in Congress for taking sexual assault prosecution authority out of the hands of military commanders. That, combined with a softening of resistance by some military leaders, is pointing to a historic shift in the battle against what Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin calls “the scourge of sexual assault.” Doubts persist about whether establishing an independent prosecuting authority for sexual assault cases would help reverse a rise in sexual assaults in the military. But key military leaders recently have signaled a willingness to consider new approaches, given failures of the current system and in light of growing pressure from Congress.