Amid a Pentagon crackdown on sexual assaults, a new study shows that reports of rapes and other forms of sexual assaults in the US military increased eight percent over the past year. US military troops reported nearly 6,000 sexual assaults in the fiscal year that ended September 2014 compared with 5,518 the year before, defense officials said on Wednesday. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the report is being released on Thursday by outgoing Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel. Based on a survey conducted by the Rand Corporation, about 19,000 services members said they had been the victim of unwanted sexual contact this year. The reports come as Congress continues to press for an overhaul of the military justice system to change the way that sexual assault cases are handled. "Let me be clear, an estimate of 20,000 cases of sexual assault and unwanted sexual contact a year in our military, or 55 cases a day, is appalling, and remains at 2010 levels," US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said in a statement. "There is no other mission in the world for our military where this much failure would be allowed. Enough is enough, last December the president said he would give the military and previous reforms a year to work and it is clear they have failed in their mission." In May, Hagel said that sexual assaults are a "clear threat" to the US military and ordered a number of new initiatives to stem the crisis.