Aaron Persky, the judge in the Stanford sexual assault trial said he was convinced about Brock Turner’s sincerity, before sentencing the 20-year-old to six months in prison. The victim has criticized his decision, while online campaigns said he shouldn’t be a county judge.
Turner had been accused of sexually abusing a 23-year-old woman on January 17, 2015. It appears that she was unconscious outside a frat party they both attended. The Stanford man said he “was too drunk” to notice she had not given him consent.
Prosecutors asked for a six-year verdict, while the former Stanford University student could have faced a sentence of up to 14 years. Judge Aaron Persky of Santa Clara Superior Court ruled that Turner will be in jail until September 2.
“I mean, I take him at his word that, subjectively, that’s his version of events. The jury, apparently, found it not to be the sequence of events. (Legal intoxication is) a factor that, when trying to assess moral culpability in this situation, is mitigating,” Persky was quoted as saying by CNN.
According to Persky, there is less moral culpability when the accused is legally intoxicated. Sentencing documents obtained by CNN demonstrate that fiscals did not completely agree with the decision.
Prosecutor Alaleh Kianerci said that the presence of alcohol consumption should not be a factor in determining if a case is “less serious”. A jury composed of 12 people did not believe Brock’s arguments are saying he was too drunk to notice that sexually abusing his victim.
Kianerci stressed that Brock deserved a larger prison sentence and told the judge that two witnesses visualized Turner over the unconscious woman. She concluded that the court should not have believed the “defendant’s lie.”
Judge: “Turner expressed a genuine feeling of remorse.”
The victim had argued that Turner did now show remorse during the trial. According to Judge Aaron Persky, Turner never admitted he sexually abused her in January 2015. He also added that the former Stanford swimmer showed a “genuine feeling of remorse.”
Prosecutor Alaleh Kianerci did not agree with how that remorsefulness was described, and how it was taken into account to order a six-month county jail sentence. It would only mean “three months in county jail,” added Kianerci, as reported by CNN.
Prisoners at the Santa Clara County jail can have their sentences reduced by up to 50 percent if they have a good behavior. Turner was also banned from the United States Swimming Organization.
— Heather (@FemmesUnafraid) June 18, 2016
Victim: “You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today.”
The 23-year-old victim wrote a letter to the defendant, which was later provided to BuzzFeed News. The woman said she decided to attend a party with friends and didn’t notice that her alcohol tolerance “had significantly lowered since college.”
She said the next thing she remembers, is being in a hallway with her hands covered in dried blood. “I did not want my body anymore,” she added after narrating the process of discovering that she was assaulted.
“I was pummeled with narrowed, pointed questions that dissected my personal life, love life, past life, family life, inane questions, accumulating trivial details to try and find an excuse for this guy who had me half naked before even bothering to ask for my name,” the victim said in a letter.
The victim told Buzzfeed News that the judge has sentenced Brock to six months in jail, but the case is still causing disgust among society. She stressed that Judge Aaron Persky has “ignited a tiny fire,” that would make people express themselves even louder.
Aaron Persky has been removed from a new case, while thousands of individuals condemn his decisions
Earlier in the week, activists from UltraViolet presented more than one million signatures to the California Commission on Judicial Performance. The national organization which seeks to protect the woman said Aaron Persky should be removed from the bench as a county judge.
On Tuesday, Santa Clara District Attorney Jeff Rosen filed an order against Persky. The latter has been prohibited from participating a similar case. He was going to decide if a surgical nurse should be accused of sexual abuse over a sedated patient, said The Associated Press.
— ✯bennydiego✯ (@bennydiego) June 11, 2016
According to Rosen, the district is disappointed about Persky’s decisions. As a result, he will no longer participate in the upcoming hearing of a male nurse who abused an anesthetized female patient, because of “lack of confidence”.
At least ten prospective jurors refused to work alongside Persky last week, in a different unrelated case, as reported by Mercury News. Rosen said that petitions to remove a judge from a case were carefully studied and are not common in the district.
Stanford law professor Michele Dauber said that people in Santa Clara should vote to decide whether they can trust Persky as a county judge or not.
ABC7 learns SCDA files motion disqualifying Judge Aaron Persky from a sexual assault case, questioning his fairness. pic.twitter.com/qf8idf5Nlg
— Vic Lee (@vicleeabc7) June 14, 2016