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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

New Admiral, Older Scandal

WASHINGTON -- Admiral Joseph Prueher has been confirmed by the Senate as commander of U.S. military forces in the Pacific, replacing a man forced to retire after making off-color remarks about an explosive rape case in Japan.

But Prueher, confirmed Tuesday, has also generated controversy regarding his handling of a 1989 sexual harassment case at the U.S. Naval Academy.

Prueher succeeds Admiral Richard Macke, who suggested to reporters in November that three U.S. servicemen charged in the rape of a 12-year-old Japanese schoolgirl on Okinawa should have hired a prostitute instead.

In 1989, Prueher was commandant of midshipmen at the academy when a group of midshipmen chained a female classmate to a urinal and took pictures of her. The male midshipmen received lenient punishments.