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Air Force Cadet Drinking Probed

The Air Force Academy is investigating allegations that 15 cadet leaders were involved in underage drinking at an off-campus retreat.

The juniors and seniors, among 21 cadets who went on an unchaperoned retreat at a resort outside Denver in September, have been stripped of their roles as group leaders, academy spokesman Lt. Col. Laurent Fox said Saturday.

"Granted, some of the cadets there were of drinking age, but they should not have tolerated the underage drinking," he said.

Academy officials have said alcohol was a prime factor in a sex assault scandal last year that resulted in the ousting of top academy officials. An investigation revealed 143 cases of sexual assault, ranging from inappropriate touching to rape, during the previous decade.

Lt. Gen. John Rosa, the academy superintendent, said cadets found to have supplied alcohol to a minor during the retreat would likely be expelled under a zero tolerance drinking policy.

The cadets supervised the training of 1,000 cadets. Their names were not released because of privacy laws.