“Victim of alleged rape at Marine base: ‘I thought … I would be safe’


By Michael Isikoff


A 23-year-old Washington, D.C. woman who alleges she was raped on a Marine Corps base just blocks from the U.S. Capitol said she never thought she’d be in danger among members of the military

“I thought I was going to a place where I would be safe,” said Karalen Morthole in an exclusive interview with NBC News. “In my head, I thought these are people who are supposed to be protecting me.”

This week a Marine Corps general ordered that Master Sgt. Ronald E. Bohlayer be charged with raping Morthole after a night of partying and drinking last July at the historic Marine Barracks on Capitol Hill. The charges come as the entire U.S. military is under fire for its handling of sexual assault cases, and barely a year after the release of an Oscar-nominated documentary, “The Invisible War,” that featured allegations of sexual assault and raucous drinking at the Barracks. The allegations got widespread attention from Congress despite strong denials from the Marine Corps.