NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - A top official says the number of sexual assaults being reported to the Navy has more than doubled from the previous year.
Rear Adm. Sean Buck says the Navy is on pace to end the 2013 fiscal year later this month with about 1,800 reports of sexual assault.
A Defense Department report released in May says the Navy reported 775 sexual assaults in the previous fiscal year.
Buck is the Navy's top sexual assault prevention and response officer. He told reporters at Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia on Wednesday the uptick in sexual assault reports was expected, and is a positive sign that sailors feel more comfortable coming forward to report assaults.
The same Defense Department report estimated that 26,000 service members have been sexually assaulted, although there were fewer than 3,000 official reports of it.