Navy Chaplain Fired After Being Caught Having Sex on Video: Reports

Navy chaplain, Capt. Loften Thornton (Navy Photo)
Navy chaplain, Capt. Loften Thornton (Navy Photo)

A Navy chaplain for Marine Forces Reserve was fired last month after a video appeared to show him having sex with a woman outside a bar in New Orleans, according to USA Today.

Marine Lt. Gen. Rex McMillian, commander of Marine Forces Reserve and Marine Forces North, fired Navy Capt. Loften C. Thornton on March 20 for "loss of trust and confidence," 1st Lt. Stephanie Leguizamon, a spokeswoman for Marine Forces Reserve, confirmed to Military.com. Task & Purpose was first to report last week that Thornton had been fired after officials began a command-directed investigation into his behavior March 17.

Leguizamon said she couldn't provide additional details due to the ongoing investigation.

Navy chaplains can be assigned to units in the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. It's not clear what Thornton's religious denomination is.

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Military.com reached out to Marine Forces Reserve for additional details. A request for comment was not returned by press time.

Defense officials confirmed to USA Today on Wednesday that leadership is examining a video purportedly showing Thornton having sex at the Crown & Anchor Pub near Algiers Point. Officials did not disclose details because the investigation is ongoing.

The pub owner, Neil Timms, told USA Today the incident "took place in front of the pub by the road near some picnic tables." Timms is cooperating with authorities, according to the report.

Thornton has been a Navy chaplain since 1992. According to Task and Purpose, he previously served as the chaplain for Headquarters and Service Battalion at Marine Corps Forces Pacific, and presided over a memorial service for 17 sailors killed in the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole.

-- Oriana Pawlyk can be reached at oriana.pawlyk@military.com. Follow her on Twitter at @Oriana0214.

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