Army recruiter accused of sexual assault
A U.S. Army sergeant is facing criminal charges after he was accused of sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl who attended the high school where the sergeant worked as a recruiter.
Sgt. Randy Loushin, 31, was issued a summons Tuesday on suspicion of misdemeanor sexual assault in connection with allegations he had sex on multiple occasions with a Central High School student. It was not immediately clear when he will make his first court appearance.
Loushin couldn’t be reached for comment Wednesday. His Facebook page indicates he’s been with the Army since 2006.
The Mesa County Sheriff’s Office opened an investigation on Monday after an Army captain told Central’s school resource officer he was looking into allegations that Loushin had sexual relations with a student, according to a sheriff’s report.
The school resource officer spoke over the phone with the now-18-year-old woman, who denied the allegations and said it was just a rumor. About 30 minutes later, the girl called the officer and asked to speak with her in private. The girl told the officer she and Loushin began to talk and text with each other during a previous Central football season. She said they initially texted each other about recruiting because she wanted to join the Army, the report said.
The girl said Loushin then began sending her texts of smiley faces and once offered her a ride home from a school dance. A few weeks later, Loushin texted her that he wanted to say something to her but couldn’t because he could get into trouble. After she encouraged him to tell her what he wanted to say, Loushin sent her an explicit text message indicating he wanted to have sex with her, the report said.
The girl said they met up later at the Army recruiting office on 25th Street and had sex. She said they had sex two other times as well, the report said.
Initially, the girl said they first had sex last March, when she would have been 17, then had sex two more times this year. She said Loushin talked to her when she was 16 about waiting to have sex with her until she was 17. She said Loushin also told her he loved her, and that she believed him. They later stopped seeing each other after he was divorced from his wife, the report said.
Upon further questioning from the school resource officer and the Army captain, the girl changed her story, saying the first time she and Loushin had sex was actually in December 2012, when she would have been 16. The age of consent in Colorado is 17.
The girl also said she had heard Loushin was talking to and texting other teenage girls.
“(The girl) said the reason she did not come forward until now was because she was afraid her father would literally try to kill Sgt. Loushin. So she waited until she turned 18,” the report said.
The school resource officer and another sheriff’s deputy met Loushin on Tuesday. Loushin initially denied any sexual encounters with the girl, but after the officer told him she knew there were text messages and that they had had sex, Loushin confessed, the report said.
He said the girl had contacted him about helping her work out and lose weight, and that they had sex in his car near Mount Garfield at the end of 2012, the report said.
Debbie Cannon, the public affairs chief for the Denver Army Recruiting Battalion, said the Army is conducting its own investigation and takes the allegations against Loushin “seriously.”
“We’re accountable to the American public, and we want them to know we take it seriously,” she said.
Cannon said Loushin has been removed from the Grand Junction Army Career Center and placed in an administrative position while the investigation is ongoing.
Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Heather Benjamin said investigators aren’t aware of any other allegations against Loushin.
“At this point, we don’t have any more detailed information than that to follow up on,” she said. “Should anybody in the community hear about this or learn about it, we would encourage them to come forward.”