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A U.S. Air Force F-35A Lightning II, bottom, flies next to an F-16 Fighting Falcon, as the two make a flyby after an unveiling celebration takes place at Luke Air Force Base for the delivery of the first F-35A fighter jet, Friday, March 14, 2014, in Glendale, Ariz. It is the first delivery of an anticipated total of 144 F-35A planes destined for Luke AFB. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

The Air Force has stripped a general of two stars after he engaged in sexual misconduct


Retired four-star Air Force Gen. Arthur Lichte has been stripped of two ranks and nearly $60,000 from his pension after engaging in sexual misconduct with a subordinate officer, USA Today reported. 

According to documents and interviews obtained by USA Today, the Air Force has determined that Lichte had coerced sex with an officer three times and told her that the would "deny it until the day he died."

The reprimands follow a blazing condemnation in December by then-Air Force secretary Deborah James, who lambasted the general for putting the officer “in a position in which she could have believed that she had no choice but to engage in these sex acts given your far superior grade, position, and significant ability to affect her career.”

“Your conduct is disgraceful and, but for the statute of limitations bar to prosecution, would be more appropriately addressed through the Uniform Code of Military Justice," she added in a letter dated Dec. 6, 2016.

Lichte's lawyer rebuked the Air Force's account of what occurred and vowed to appeal its decision.

“My client did not commit a sexual assault and vehemently denies the unsworn allegations made against him regarding consensual events that happened over eight years ago," Larry Youngner said in a statement. Lichte regrets his actions, is sorry for the pain he has caused his family and asked for privacy, Youngner said.

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