Brock Turner was convicted of sexual abuse in March. Allegedly, he assaulted an unconscious woman on Stanford University Campus. He was sentenced to six months imprisonment and three years’ probation. However, this has sparked an outrage among people.
The decision of the court resulted in an online petition, demanding the judge Aeron Persky’s removal. The petition has been signed by more than 100,000 people. Besides, the prosecution has stated that the punishment is not befitting the crime.
The leniency showed by the judge in Turner’s case, who was convicted on multiple felony counts has not gone very well with journalists and sexual assault prevention advocates. To add fuel to the controversy, authorities initially refused to release Turner’s mugshot. As a result, most news sites had to use a yearbook photo that featured a clean-cut smiling image of the athlete.
People accused police of trying to protect the swimmer and said that they were intentionally not releasing the mugshot as photos can influence public’s opinion of a case. Moreover, the media came under fire as blacks and underprivileged criminals are mostly presented with booking photos, reported Boing Boing. After, the criticism authorities finally released the mugshot taken at his June 2 trial.
— LEFT✍🏾 (@LeftSentThis) June 7, 2016
Moreover, on the day of his trial, a tight security was arranged in the court premises. The judge decided to sentence Brock Turner for only six months on the basis of a probation report which includes a letter from one of Turner’s friends. The letter claimed that Turner was not a “real rapist”. Rather, it presented him as a victim. It said that Turner was suffering from “the decision of a girl who doesn’t remember anything but the amount she drank to press charges”, as per Think Progress.
Meanwhile, the athlete’s father sparked further outrage with his statement to the court where he said that the 6 months jail sentence is too harsh for a 20-minute-action, BBC stated.
He said, “His life will never be the one that he dreamed about and worked so hard to achieve. That is a steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action out of his 20 plus years of life.”
aw poor bb! must be so hard to be a rapist :,( (letter from Brock Turner's father to the judge) pic.twitter.com/QexUpJI7Xz
— lucy (@lucyncollins) June 7, 2016
I always wondered how rapists become rapists, &then I read Brock Turner's father's article &I realized a lot of it goes back to the parents
— d (@danicalifournia) June 7, 2016