National

Nov 13, 2013 4:15 PM by Jeff Langan

Jury deliberates in Air Force officer's trial

ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) - A jury has begun deliberations in the assault trial of an Air Force officer who once led the branch's sexual assault response team and is accused of groping a woman.

The seven-member jury heard closing arguments Wednesday in the misdemeanor case against 42-year-old Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski. His arrest following the May 5 incident fueled a national furor over sexual abuse in the military and whether top brass take the issue seriously.

A 23-year-old woman testified that Krusinski grabbed her backside outside a Crystal City bar.

Defense lawyers argued that there were inconsistencies in her story. She admitted punching Krusinski a few times in retaliation, while other witnesses described seeing her hit him countless times.

Prosecutors said the jury should not be distracted by what happened after the alleged grope.

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