The former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is waiting for a federal appellate court in California to decide whether his former aide’s civil lawsuit against him for sexual assault will proceed to a jury trial.
Air Force Gen. John Hyten retired in November as the No. 2 military officer after serving a single tour in the Joint Chiefs. He was replaced by Navy Adm. Christopher Grady.
Just before his 2019 Senate confirmation hearing, Army Col. Kathryn Spletstoser, his former military aide, accused Gen. Hyten of sexually assaulting her in 2017 while he was commander of U.S. Strategic Command.
Gen. Hyten denied the allegations, which were investigated by the Air Force. The probe found there was insufficient evidence to file criminal charges or recommend an administrative punishment. The general was confirmed by the Senate and spent about two years in the Joint Chiefs.
The now-retired colonel filed a lawsuit against Gen. Hyten in civil court soon after his confirmation and is seeking at least $100,000 in damages for emotional, physical and economic injury.
A federal court in California ruled in October 2020 that the suit could continue, according to Air Force Times.
Gen. Hyten’s legal team has filed an appeal.