Convicted ‘First-Time’ Rapist Gets Lenient Six-Month Sentence

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CONVICTED RAPIST BROCK ALLEN TURNER

Brock Allen Turner, who withdrew from the university, was arrested after students saw him lying on top of an unconscious woman outside a frat party


From Sam Levin at The Guardian / 06.02.2016:

A former Stanford University athlete convicted of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman was sentenced to six months in county jail and probation in a case that has shed light on what advocates say is an epidemic of violence on college campuses.

Brock Allen Turner, a 20-year-old swimmer who dropped out of the elite California university last year, appeared stoic in court in Palo Alto on Thursday, two months after a jury convicted him of multiple felonies, including assault with intent to rape an intoxicated woman.

The 23-year-old victim delivered an emotional speech at the hearing, decrying rape culture and asking that the judge send a strong message about the severity of Brock’s attack on her.

“We cannot forgive everyone’s first sexual assault … The seriousness of rape has to be communicated clearly. We should not create a culture that suggests we learn that rape is wrong through trial and error.”

Turner, who is from Dayton, Ohio, was arrested on the Palo Alto campus on 18 January 2015 after two Stanford graduate students spotted him lying on top of the victim outside of a Kappa Alpha party behind a dumpster. When officers arrived, the woman, who is not a Stanford student, was “completely unresponsive” and partially clothed, with a blood-alcohol level three times the legal limit, according to police.

The two witnesses who were biking past that evening said they saw Turner “thrusting” on top of the motionless woman and that they intervened and held him until police showed up.

Turner, who had a blood-alcohol level that was twice the legal limit, testified in court that he could walk and talk at the time and acknowledged that the victim was “very drunk”. He claimed that he did not intend to rape the woman and that the encounter was consensual.

The victim, who gave emotional testimony during the trial, regained consciousness at a hospital more than three hours after the assault and told police she had no memory of the attack.

After a jury convicted Turner of sexually penetrating an intoxicated and unconscious person with a foreign object, prosecutors asked a judge to sentence him to six years in California prison. Probation officials had recommended the significantly lighter penalty of six months in county jail, according to the San Jose Mercury News.

The judge, Aaron Perksy, cited Turner’s age and lack of criminal history as factors in his decision, saying, “A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him … I think he will not be a danger to others.”

After the hearing, Santa Clara County district attorney Jeff Rosen slammed the sentencing, which will likely result in Turner spending three months behind bars – a fraction of the maximum 14 years he was potentially facing.

“The punishment does not fit the crime.”

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