Rape and consequences

Let’s look at 2 cases of rape. The first involves Worcester Polytechnic Institute:

The college made the arguments in response to a civil suit filed last year in Worcester Superior Court on behalf of the victim. The woman’s suit alleges the college failed to provide a safe environment for students.

The rape occurred in April 2012 at the condominium building in San Juan where Doe, who was a third-year student completing a two-month research project, and other students lived. Part of the building was leased for student housing, and WPI required Doe to live there.

The security guard, William Rodriguez, was convicted by a unanimous jury in the state court of Puerto Rico and is serving a 20-year sentence, according to court documents.

Rodriguez was previously a state police officer in Puerto Rico but was suspended in 2011 after he was convicted of selling bullets to an undercover agent, documents show.

The civil suit alleges that WPI failed to ensure or require proper background checks for security guards. WPI contracted with a local company, Sea Breeze Inc., for the apartments, but there were no terms in the lease relating to security guards, the lawsuit said.

In the court documents, the college said it is not seeking to blame the woman for being raped but challenged her claim that school officials were negligent in their protection of students.

The attorneys asked Doe whether her parents had taught her “don’t take candy from strangers” or how to protect herself from sexual assault. In describing the night, Doe said she expected a security guard to protect, not attack, her.

One of the attorneys then asked: “So it was okay to, despite that fact that you felt it was weird and you were surprised that he got into the elevator with you, you felt it was okay to go to the roof, a dark secluded roof with a man you know nothing about, whose name you don’t even know, and you felt that was not risky behavior? Do you understand my question?’’

“Yeah. No, I don’t think it’s risky behavior is my answer,’’ Doe said.

“Okay. Would you agree with me that if you had not gone to the roof with Mr. Rodriguez this incident wouldn’t have occurred?’’ the attorney asked.

“I can’t speculate that,” she answered.

I really don’t understand this. The college says it is not seeking to blame the victim and then … blames the victim. It sounds like the lawyer for the college is trying to argue that the college isn’t responsible since they subcontracted out to the local company which means it doesn’t matter if she was partially at fault (by the way, this is a case where it should be obvious she’s not at fault), so why are they trying to argue it was partially her fault?

In the second case we get a lovely man:

The two bikers skidded to a stop on “Scary Path.” True to its nickname among Stanford students, the dirt trail on the edge of campus was home to something sinister in the early hours of Jan. 18, 2015.

The bikers were on their way to a frat party. They halted, however, at the sight of a man lying on top of a half-naked woman.

Normally, the bikers might have been amused to catch sight of fellow students having sex. But this was different.

The man, tall and slim and athletic, was thrusting atop the woman.

The woman wasn’t moving. At all.

“Is everything okay?” Lars Peter Jonsson, a Swedish graduate student, shouted.

When the man turned around, Jonsson could see the woman’s genitals were exposed.

“She didn’t react to my call,” Jonsson testified Friday in a Palo Alto, Calif., courtroom, according to the San Jose Mercury News. “I said, ‘What the f— are you doing? She’s unconscious.’”

The man tried to run away, but Jonsson and his friend caught him and pinned him to the ground until police came and made an arrest.

So, this guy, Brock Turner, was caught raping a woman who was unconscious red-handed. If he had plead guilty and showed remorse, maybe he would would have gotten a light sentence but he decided to go to trial. Let’s look at the victim’s letter:

I thought there’s no way this is going to trial; there were witnesses, there was dirt in my body, he ran but was caught. He’s going to settle, formally apologize, and we will both move on. Instead, I was told he hired a powerful attorney, expert witnesses, private investigators who were going to try and find details about my personal life to use against me, find loopholes in my story to invalidate me and my sister, in order to show that this sexual assault was in fact a misunderstanding. That he was going to go to any length to convince the world he had simply been confused.

Here’s part of Brock Turner’s statement before the sentencing and the victim’s counter:

You said, you are in the process of establishing a program for high school and college students in which you speak about your experience to “speak out against the college campus drinking culture and the sexual promiscuity that goes along with that.”

Campus drinking culture. That’s what we’re speaking out against? You think that’s what I’ve spent the past year fighting for? Not awareness about campus sexual assault, or rape, or learning to recognize consent. Campus drinking culture. Down with Jack Daniels. Down with Skyy Vodka. If you want talk to people about drinking go to an AA meeting. You realize, having a drinking problem is different than drinking and then forcefully trying to have sex with someone? Show men how to respect women, not how to drink less.

What made this even worse is Turner had supporting statements:

“I don’t think it’s fair to base the fate of the next 10+ years of his life on the decision of a girl who doesn’t remember anything but the amount she drank to press charges against him. I am not blaming her directly for this, because that isn’t right,” she wrote to Judge Persky. “But where do we draw the line and stop worrying about being politically correct every second of the day and see that rape on campuses isn’t always because people are rapists.”

Wow, that’s some stupid there–calling rape rape is not being politically correct, it’s stating the obvious and a person who rapes someone is by definition a rapist.

And the father (we should give him some slack, but really):

These verdicts have broken and shattered him and our family in so many ways. 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 years of life. The fact that he now has to register as a sexual offender for the rest of his life forever alters where he can live, visit, work, and how he will be able to interact with people and organizations. What I know as his father is that incarceration is not the appropriate punishment for Brock. He has no prior criminal history and has never been violent to anyone including his actions on the night of Jan 17th 2015. Brock can do so many positive things as a contributor to society and is totally committed to educating other college age students about the dangers of alcohol consumption and sexual promiscuity.

And the judge:

According to the judge: “A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him. I think he will not be a danger to others.”

And:

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky said he weighed Turner’s character, lack of criminal history and remorsefulness in determining to bypass the heavier penalty of six years in state prison requested by prosecutors.

With good behavior, Turner, 20, is expected to serve three months in county jail. He will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life and complete a sex offender management program.

Gee, 3 months for rape, the perks of the privileged.

 

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