Much of the country was furious when Brock Turner was sentenced to just six months in prison after he raped a fellow Stanford student. Their outrage only intensified when Turner ended up serving only three months of his already too brief sentence.
While Turner certainly did not receive a punishment that fit his heinous crime, a small amount of justice has been served for those who wanted to see him spend more time behind bars (he could have been sentenced up to 14 years). Turner’s mugshot was recently featured in a criminal justice textbook to illustrate an entry about rape.
Hannah Kendall Shuman, a Washington State University student, was one of the first to notice Turner’s appearance in the textbook, Introduction to Criminal Justice. She shared a photo of the entry on Facebook last week.
The caption underneath Turner’s photo reads:
‘Brock Turner, a Stanford student who raped and assaulted an unconscious female college student behind a dumpster at a fraternity party, was recently released from jail after serving only three months. Some are shocked at how short this sentence is. Others who are more familiar with the way sexual violence has been handled in the criminal justice system are shocked that he was found guilty and served any time at all.’
In her Facebook post, Shuman celebrated the use of Turner’s photo in the textbook:
‘He may have been able to get out of prison time but in my Criminal Justice 101 textbook, Brock Turner is the definition of rape, so he’s got that goin for him.’
At the time of this writing, the post has been shared more than 93,000 times, and nearly 4,000 Facebook users have commented on it.
The majority of commenters seem to be quite pleased with Turner being used as an example of how poorly many judges handle rape cases.
Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky, who handed down Turner’s insultingly short sentence, released a statement in July of this year defending his decision.
‘As a judge, it is my role to consider both sides. It’s not always popular, but it’s the law and I took an oath to follow it without regard to public opinion or my opinions as a former prosecutor.’
Many of Persky’s critics, led by Stanford University law professor Michele Dauber, have launched a campaign to recall him. They have called for Persky to be replaced with a “judge who will protect and serve victims — not rapists” and criticized his “lenient sentences to athletes and upper-class defendants.”
Featured image via YouTube screenshot.