The suspended head of the Army War College is being investigated over allegations of sexual misconduct, a service official said Thursday.
Maj. Gen. Stephen Maranian “was suspended from his duties for an allegation of inappropriate touching unrelated to his current position,” Army spokeswoman Cynthia Smith said in a statement.
Special agents from Army Criminal Investigation Command are investigating the allegation, Smith added.
Task and Purpose reported that Maranian is under investigation over alleged abusive sexual contact with an Army civilian, and that a military protective order was issued against him on Feb. 9, the day he was suspended.
“No further information will be released at this time to protect the integrity of the investigative process,” Smith said. “These are allegations at this time, and MG Maranian is presumed innocent until and if proven otherwise.”
The Army for years has struggled to curtail sexual harassment and assault within the ranks, an effort that was ramped up following an independent review at Fort Hood in Texas that found leadership failures allowed unchecked and widespread sexual assault and violence.
Army Secretary John Whitley, the service’s top civilian leader, last week called on the force to combat “corrosive behavior” including discrimination, extremist views and sexual harassment.
And Defense Secretary Lloyd AustinLloyd AustinOvernight Defense & National Security — The Pentagon's deadly mistake France pulls ambassadors to US, Australia in protest of submarine deal Pentagon admits 'tragic mistake' in strike that killed 10 civilians MORE during his nomination hearing pledged to “fight hard to stamp out sexual assault.”
Maranian was suspended after he had been at the Carlisle, Pa., institution for less than a year. He took over as commandant July 30 after previously serving as the provost of the Army University at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas.
The Army War College provides graduate-level education to senior military officers and civilians heading to senior leadership assignments and responsibilities.
Updated at 8:32 p.m.