John Hyten testifies before House Armed Services Committee in 2017. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Army Col. Kathryn Spletstoser on Friday publicly accused Commander of U.S. Strategic Command and Air Force Gen. John Hyten of sexually assaulting her in a hotel room in 2017, the NYT reports.

The big picture: The Pentagon reports that the, "Estimated prevalence of sexual assault for active duty women increased" in 2018. It estimates that 20,500 service members — men and women — experienced sexual assault in 2018, up from approximately 14,900 in 2016. Hyten, Trump's nominee to be the next Joint Chiefs of Staff vice chairman, would oversee 1.2 million active-duty troops if confirmed.

What's happening: Hyten has denied the allegations. A Defense Department official told the Times that the Air Force's investigation into Spletstoser's allegations did not find any supporting evidence, "except for the fact that the two were together at each time that she alleges abusive sexual contact took place."

  • Spletstoser and Hyten privately testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee this week, as Hyten's nomination is examined.
  • An Air Force official tasked with investigating Spletstoser's complaint declined to recommend Hyten to a court-martial in June.

What she's saying: After Hysten was nominated be the next Joint Chiefs vice chair, Spletstoser said, “I realized I have a moral responsibility to come forward," per the Times.

Flashback: An anonymous senior military officer told the AP earlier this month that Hyten kissed, hugged and rubbed up against her in 2017 — and that he "tried to derail her military career after she rebuffed him."

Go deeper: Military sexual assaults reported in Pentagon survey jump to 20,000

Go deeper

12 mins ago - Sports

Sports in the coronavirus era might need an asterisk

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

American sports leagues are back, and COVID-permitting, we're finally entering the period of uninterrupted sports bliss we've been anticipating for months.

The question: Given the unusual circumstances, it's worth considering how each season will be remembered years from now. So we pose the question: Do sports in 2020 need an asterisk?

What China's uneven recovery means for the U.S.

China and much of Southeast Asia look to be bouncing back strongly from the coronavirus pandemic as stock markets and much of the country's economic data are returning to pre-pandemic levels.

What's happening: "Our tracking points to a clear V-shaped recovery in China," economists at the Institute of International Finance said in a note to clients Tuesday, predicting the country's second-quarter growth will rise above 2% after its worst quarter on record in Q1.

Chief Justice John Roberts was hospitalized in June after fall

Chief Justice John Roberts overseeing the Senate impeachment trial of President Trump. Photo: Senate Television via Getty Images

Chief Justice John Roberts was hospitalized overnight after a fall on June 21, a Supreme Court spokesperson confirmed to the Washington Post on Tuesday.

Why it matters: Speculation regarding justices' health — given their lifetime appointments — always runs rampant, and this incident may have not been made public if the Post hadn't "received a tip."