The Marine Corps shared a press release Monday saying the Marine pled guilty in late June to the nonconsensual sharing of explicit photos on the Marines United Facebook group. The defendant was sentenced to 10 days in confinement, a rank reduction by three grades, and the loss of two-thirds of a month's pay. The Corps also announced that the "process to administratively separate the Marine is underway," which is the equivalent of being fired.
The Marine is not being identified due to the Privacy Act of 1974, which shields the identity of service members who face a summary court-martial, Military.com reported. A summary court-martial is considered an administrative proceeding where the defendant appears before a judge and not a military jury, unlike a general or special court-martial.
News of the Marines United group first emerged in early March, when it was reported that the Department of Defense was investigating reports of Marines and other service members sharing explicit photos of fellow female Marines, veterans, and other women on a secret Facebook page.
The case led to a revision of U.S. Navy Regulations to include a ban on the nonconsensual sharing of intimate photos, an update to the Marine Corps' Separation and Retirement Manual determining that members can be kicked out for distributing nude photos without consent, and the creation of a task force to examine cultural issues within the Marine Corps' ranks.
"I think it’s important to recognize that our understanding of the issue has evolved over time," said Gen. Glenn Walters, head of the task force, in a statement. "How we handle cases today is much different and more effective as a result of what occurred with Marines United. Moving forward, we are planning to establish a permanent structure that can address all of the factors that contribute to the negative subculture that has allowed this behavior to exist."