FORT HOOD — After a two-day court-martial that has made national headlines, a III Corps master sergeant was found guilty Tuesday night of two of four charges against him.
Master Sgt. Brad Grimes, 37, was found guilty of conspiring to patronize a prostitute and solicitation to commit adultery. He will be demoted to sergeant first class and will receive a letter of reprimand.
The verdict was handed down by a six-person jury after nearly two hours of deliberation.
Grimes was not convicted on two other charges of patronizing a prostitute and committing adultery.
Grimes conspired with another Fort Hood noncommissioned officer, Sgt. 1st Class Gregory McQueen, to arrange to have sex with a female private first class at the Killeen La Quinta Inn in February, according to prosecutors. Both Grimes and the female private are married.
“The plan was for prostitution,” Maj. Elizabeth Walker, a military prosecutor, said in her closing argument.
Grimes’ defense team argued there was no conspiracy to procure a prostitute, no money was exchanged and the sex never happened.
“He was tempted, and it’s not a crime to be tempted,” Grimes’ civilian lawyer, Daniel Conway, said in his closing statement. “In the moment of truth, he did the right thing.”
Conway said the real conspiracy was between McQueen and the female solider, who he theorized were in the early stages of trying to organize “sex parties” that had nothing to do with his client.
“McQueen will have his day in court — that is not this case,” Conway said.
mcqueen not charged
McQueen has not been charged with a crime, but testimony and documents submitted as evidence hint that McQueen, and possibly others, are still under investigation.
McQueen, who was a coordinator with Fort Hood’s Sexual Harassment/Assault Response Program, also has drawn national headlines when the news broke earlier this year that he was being investigated for a prostituion scandal involving other soldiers.
The news carried added weight as the Army continues to battle a problem of sexual assaults within the ranks.
Grimes, an explosive ordnance disposal specialist, is an operations noncommissioned officer with Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, III Corps, and has served in the Army for almost 18 years.
During his sentencing, Grimes took the stand and stated that he wished to continue to serve in the Army. “I had a moment of weakness in far-right circumstances,” Grimes said.