SQUADRON COMMANDER SENTENCED IN SEX
CASE AT McCHORD AFB - LT COL STEVEN DiMATTEO
CONVICTED OF "INAPPROPRIATE SEXUAL CONTACT"
WITH MALE STAFF SERGEANT - OFF TO PRISON FOR
11 MONTHS - MARRIED FATHER OF THREE HAD
TOTAL OF 18 YEARS MILITARY SERVICE
Usually it's the "he said - she said" sex cases that result in the male service-member being sent off to prison, but this one has a unique twist.
Air Force Lt. Col. Steven DiMatteo was convicted, among other things, of exposing himself and "inappropriately touching" an enlisted man while both were serving in Turkey.
There were no witnesses to the alleged acts, and the colonel's civilian defense attorney complained to the court that DiMatteo's accuser has a "serious credibility problem," but the jury voted to convict anyway. Thus the commander of the 10th Airlift Squadron, 62nd Opns. Group at McChord AFB Washington, is on his way to prison.
MARRIED WITH THREE CHILDREN, COLONEL'S CAREER DESTROYED
"Do not pass GO or collect $200" and there's no "GET OUT OF JAIL FREE" card. The penalty is severe, as DiMatteo - if innocent, (and we don't have the slightest idea on that) - loses what, in two years could have been, a tidy active duty retirement pension.
His wife and three children will miss that financial security as well as "daddy" having a big job in the Air Force where all but the full birds, generals and his fellow light colonels called him "sir." Now the guards at Miramar will address him as "hey, you." Not the way the ROTC grad from Penn State wanted to end up, we are sure.
DiMatteo, a one-time navigator, had served without blemish in Bosnia, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan. But, he slipped up big time, apparently, at Incirlik AFB Turkey, where he allegedly made a pass and "touched" the genitals of a traumatized Air Force staff sergeant.
That got the OSI (Office of Special Investigations) all in a lather, as there's nothing they love more than to hunt down homosexuals. The prosecution piled on the charges. Along with the usual "conduct unbecoming an officer," they nailed DiMatteo for "dereliction of duty" because he, get this, supposedly asked his male "victim" to call him "Stevie D." Why that's terrible! Shocking!
A DOUBLE-STANDARD OF "JUSTICE"
What if some one was caught addressing the esteemed Maj. Jill (100% "disability" pension) Metzger as "Jilly Willy?" Only her mommy or retired colonel daddy have a right to do that. Well, maybe her young captain OSI "husband," can too. Anyone else, however, should be court-martialed.
But certainly no court-martial, under any circumstances, for this two-time Air Force Marathon winner who allegedly faked a kidnapping overseas, slandered a host country, cost the American taxpayers millions of dollars in an expensive "search " for nonexistent "abductors," disobeyed a direct order, made a false official statement, engaged in adultery and fraternization with an enlisted man, tried to cover up an abortion, and oh yes, engaged in "conduct unbecoming an officer."
It's not what you know, it's who you "know." Or something like that. Right, general?
DiMatteo didn't fail an OSI polygraph test ("by a country mile"), nor has he run in both the Air Force and Marine Corps Marathons this year. We do know one thing for sure. He has no powerful "connections." Zero, nada, zip. This officer in blue is on his way to prison, his life ruined forever. And those who continue the cover-up and protect "the pampered one" could care less.