A Female Marine who held the distinction of being one of the first women to join the Marine Infantry is being kicked out after it was discovered she had an intimate relationship with a subordinate.
26-year-old Remedios Cruz was a Sergeant assigned to the First Battalion of the Eight Marines at the beginning of 2017, one of three women who made history for the unit after the Department of Defense -under the direction of former Defense Secretary Ash Carter in 2013- began forcibly integrating qualified women into combat units.
Unfortunately for Cruz, she fell in love with one of her subordinates, eventually marrying him. When the Marine Corps found out, they charged her with fraternization, adultery and larceny.
“The biggest mistakes I’ve made in the infantry were from my personal relationships,” Corporal Cruz said in an interview. “I really want to move on.”
As part of a plea deal, Cruz pleaded guilty to fraternization.
According to the New York Times, the officer involved in the pre-trial hearings saw no reason for the larceny and adultery charges, recommending administrative punishment for fraternizing. Cruz’s battalion commander, however, recommended that Cruz go to trial for all three charges.
After pleading guilty, she was demoted to Corporal and confined to base. In addition to her demotion, she may be separated on other-than-honorable conditions, which could severely hamper both her Veterans Affairs benefits and future employment.
For Cruz, it’s bittersweet.
“I had a taste of what it was like to train to fight,” Corporal Cruz said. “And I felt like if I was going to say that I served my country, I wanted to be able to just do that- but not on the sidelines.”
Arriving to her unit in January of 2017, Cruz began seeing and married her husband by August of the same year.
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