Incidents of sexual assault and other unwanted sexual contact at the three military service academies have spiked nearly 50 percent since 2016, defense officials announced on Thursday.

The term "unwanted sexual contact" is used to describe behaviors that constitute sexual assault under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, including rape, aggravated sexual contact, and abusive sexual contact, said Nate Galbreath, deputy director of the Pentagon's Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Office.

A total of 747 midshipmen and cadets responded that they had been the victim of unwanted sexual contact as part of a biennial survey, compared with 507 victims in 2016, Galbreath told reporters on Thursday as the Pentagon released its annual report on sexual harassment and violence at the military service academies.

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The Air Force Academy’s falcon mascot should fully recover from injuries that she suffered from a prank by West Point cadets before Saturday’s Army-Air Force football game, said Air Force Lt. Col. Tracy Bunko, an academy spokeswoman.

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U.S. Air Force/Jim Varhegyi

One of the Air Force Academy's live falcon mascots sustained "life-threatening injuries" after it was stolen from an Air Force colonel's home as part of a prank by West Point cadets ahead of the Army-Air Force football game on Saturday, the Colorado Gazette reports.

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U.S. Air Force/Tech. Sgt. Julius Delos Reyes

An Air Force Academy cadet already awaiting court-martial for sexual assault will face additional sexual misconduct charges at an evidence hearing Tuesday.

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U.S. Air Force/Tech. Sgt. Julius Delos Reyes

The ritual was something out of a bad fraternity movie: blindfolded neophyte cadets, half-naked seniors and a threat of forced oral sex.

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U.S. Air Force/Staff Sgt. Andrew Lee)

The Air Force Academy is changing amid a new Pentagon strategy that will put more cadets in cockpits and fewer in office jobs.

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