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A five-month investigation of National Guard conduct and culture by The Arizona Republic has uncovered a systemic patchwork of criminal and ethical misconduct that critics say continues to fester in part because of leadership failures and lax discipline.
According to interviews with military officers and records obtained by The Republic, Arizona Army National Guard members over the past decade engaged in misbehavior that included sexual abuse, enlistment improprieties, forgery, firearms violations, embezzlement, and assaults.
The wrongdoing, most of which has not been previously disclosed, was concentrated among military recruiters who often visit high schools in search of teenage recruits. National Guard investigators found that non-commissioned officers, known as NCOs, engaged in sexual misconduct, collected recruiting fees to which they were not entitled, forged Guard documents, and committed other offenses such as hunting the homeless with paintball guns. Read More