ARLINGTON, Va. -- A judge has set a July 18 trial date for an Air Force officer who led the branch's sex assault response unit until he himself was charged with sexual battery.
Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski, 41, of Arlington, appeared Thursday at an arraignment in Arlington County General District Court.
Arlington police say he groped a woman in a parking lot early Sunday in a section of Crystal City that is home to several popular nightspots.
Krusinski and his lawyer, Sheryl Shane, declined comment after the hearing.
The Air Force removed Krusinski from his post after it learned of his arrest, which was first reported by ARLnow.com.
Shane argued for a later trial date, saying she might have numerous witnesses and need to conduct a significant investigation. She also cited the extensive publicity the case has received -- Krusinski dodged more than a dozen TV cameras as he left the courthouse -- in seeking a delay.
Judge Richard McCue said he saw no reason why publicity should cause a delay, and said the rules in General District Court do not permit an extensive discovery process.
If convicted, he faces up to a year in prison on the misdemeanor charge.
According to court records, he is a divorced father of two who has served in Afghanistan and Iraq and graduated from the U.S. Air Force Academy. In 2009, Air Mobility Command’s Manpower, Personnel and Services Directorate named him as the Force Support Field Grade Officer of the Year while he was the commander of 6th Force Support Squadron at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Fla.