Air Force colonel sentenced to prison

June 26, 2008 1:24:06 PM PDT
An Air Force colonel was sentenced Thursday to nine years in prison and kicked out of the military for assaulting a woman, misusing his government travel card and other crimes at Sheppard Air Force Base. Col. Samuel Lofton III faced 140 years in prison after being convicted of 34 counts, including indecent assault, conduct unbecoming an officer and a gentleman, larceny and being absent without leave.

The 49-year-old former training commander also was fined $14,000 and must serve an additional year in prison if he doesn't pay it.

He will remain in the military until his release from prison but must forfeit all his pay during that time. He makes more than $9,000 a month.

Lofton racked up $26,000 in personal expenses on his government travel card and was reimbursed $14,000 for trips he never took. He pleaded guilty to those charges last week.

He was convicted Wednesday of assault and bad conduct charges involving two women. He was acquitted of rape and two other assault charges involving a third woman.