Assault trial set for Air Force officer accused of groping; had led sex assault response team

An Air Force officer who once led the branch's sex assault response team is scheduled to go on trial on charges that he groped a woman outside a Crystal City bar.

Forty-two-year-old Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski was initially charged with misdemeanor sexual battery following the May 5 incident. But Arlington County prosecutors subsequently dropped the sexual battery charge and substituted a misdemeanor assault and battery charge.

Commonwealth's Attorney Theo Stamos says a generic assault charge was more appropriate under Virginia law given the standard of proof required for a sexual battery conviction.

The woman told police that Krusinski grabbed her breast and buttocks.

The Air Force removed Krusinski from his post with the Sexual Assault Prevention and Response unit after his arrest became public.

A jury trial is scheduled for Tuesday morning.