ARLINGTON, Va. — A woman testified that an Air Force officer who once led the branch’s sex-assault response team groped her outside a Crystal City bar, then asked if she liked it.

A misdemeanor assault trial began Tuesday in Arlington for 42-year-old Lt. Col. Jeffrey Krusinski. He was initially charged with misdemeanor sexual battery, but Arlington County prosecutors subsequently dropped that charge and substituted a generic assault-and-battery charge.

Commonwealth’s Attorney Theo Stamos says the new charge was more appropriate given the standard of proof required for a sexual battery conviction in Virginia.

The woman testified that Krusinski grabbed her breast and buttocks on May 5, and she responded by punching him.

The Air Force removed Krusinski from his Sexual Assault Prevention and Response unit post after his arrest.

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