A Navy Times investigation showed female sailors from more than a dozen commands were targeted, including the locally-based carriers Eisenhower and Truman, as well as the destroyer USS Cole. Naval Station Norfolk and Naval Air Station Oceana were also named among others ships and installations across the globe.
The Navy Times found that anonymous online voyeurs sought specific sailors, often identified by picture, job title, rank and even name, and many times collected naked photos the article said are typically shared confidentially between couples in long distance relationships.
Chief of Naval Operations Admiral John Richardson Tuesday sent a long and scathing memo to Navy commanders that reads in part: “Team, we have a problem and we need to solve it. Really solve it – not put a band-aid on it, not whitewash over it, not look the other way.”
Admiral Richardson went on to add: “There is no room in the Navy for toxic behavior ” and “If you’re one of that minority that just won’t get it, then it’s time for you to leave the Navy.”
Commander D. P. Wroe, of the Cole, posted a statement on Facebook Tuesday, which said in part, “While I have little information besides what is in the press, it is worthwhile to remind and restate what we believe in here on COLE. Our command mission statement discusses the COLE standard: ‘We respect each other and every sailor’s contributions to our team’s excellence.’ There is no place for such behavior on my ship, and in my Navy.”
A Navy spokesperson told WAVY.com they could not confirm the involvement of any local sailors or ships as NCIS is investigating.
On Thursday, Congresswoman Jackie Speier, of California, will be introducing Service Members Intimate Privacy Protection Act. It would establish a federal law making it illegal for people to share intimate images on the internet without the subject’s consent.