Air Force Instructor Asks for Leniency
An Air Force instructor convicted of raping a female recruit and sexually assaulting several others cried Saturday as he asked a military jury not to sentence him to life in prison.
Staff Sgt. Luis Walker is among 12 Lackland Air Force Base instructors investigated for sexual misconduct toward at least 31 female trainees, and he faced the most serious counts among the six instructors charged in a sex scandal that rocked one of the nation’s busiest training bases.
A military jury convicted Walker on Friday on all 28 counts including rape, aggravated sexual contact and multiple counts of aggravated sexual assault. Trial judge Col. Wesley Moore consolidated those charges into 20 on Saturday morning, saying some counts duplicated others, but the change did not affect Walker’s maximum sentence.
Walker submitted a written statement during the sentencing hearing, but he also spoke from a podium directly to the jury while his two sons, ages 7 and 4, looked on quietly.
“I ask for my family’s sake, for my two boys right there,” Walker said, wheeling around and sobbing. “I ask that I am allowed to have a future with them.”
Walker tried to mention having taken a polygraph test, but the prosecution objected before he could divulge the results.
“I promise you,” he said of any sentence, “I’ll accept it humbly and with the commitment to move forward positively.”
Prosecutors say from October 2010 through January 2011, Walker sexually assaulted or had improper sexual or personal contact with at least 10 female recruits. Lackland is where all Air Force recruits go through basic training.
Several of Walker’s alleged victims testified during his court-martial, including one who described how Walker lured her into an office and sexually assaulted her on a bed, ignoring her pleas to stop.