An Air Force Academy cadet accused of sexual assault in September was acquitted by a court martial Wednesday night.
Senior cadet Steven Fox, who was lauded for his work with rape prevention programs, was accused in September of assaulting a Colorado Springs man he took as a date to an academy dance in 2015. Charging papers said Fox penetrated the man with a finger without his consent and rubbed himself against the man's leg for sexual gratification.
Fox could have served 20 years in prison if convicted.
The case, which was heard in front of a panel of officers, is the first of its kind at the academy involving homosexual acts since the 2011 repeal of the military's ban on gays.
Fox entered the academy after the repeal and was known at the school for his efforts to help men report sexual assaults, including his participation in a theatrical production to highlight the concerns of male rape victims.