Two members of the Senate Armed Services Committee have asked the Department of Defense for information on the rising incidence of child abuse and neglect in the military.
In a letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, Sen. John McCain, R.-Ariz., and Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., cited an Army Times investigation detailing the spike in child abuse in Army families over the past decade.
The senators asked Hagel to provide them with detailed information about the cases — throughout the armed services — and to explain what is being done to stem the tide.
Army Times reported that over the past decade there have been 29,552 cases of child abuse and neglect in Army families. Among those 1,400 have been subjected to sexual abuse.
The abuse led to the death of 118 children.
The senators gave Hagel until Sept, 3 to provide statistics on abuse cases, as well as the relationship of the cases to pre-screening of recruits and the relationship between child abuse and previous criminal convictions.
Army Times found that several of those charged with child abuse had a previous history of abuse.