Lawyers are a sly breed. When Walter Madison, the attorney of Ma’lik Richmond, one of the two teens recently convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl while she was unconscious from over-drinking, tried to exonerate his clients, he claimed that the girl had in her stupor managed to give consent to be digitally penetrated by the boys. Failing that, and now that his client has been found guilty, as we reported Monday, he has changed his tact. Sure, he raped her, but why should that matter: after all, he’s only a kid himself, and if she can’t make decisions while inebriated, how can he?
More specifically, what he is claiming is that the 16-year-old rapist’s brain isn’t “developed” enough to be held accountable for his action, at least to the degree of being on a sex-offender list all his life.
He went on Piers Morgan Tonight on Tuesday giving his spiel on how he would appeal the verdict judge Thomas Lipps gave, specifically regarding the one year in rehabilitation center and the requirement to register as a sex offender. He said among other things (as reported by the Atlantic Wire):
I don’t believe that a person at 75 years old should have to explain for something they did at 16 when scientific evidence would support your brain isn’t fully developed… when evidence in the case would suggest that you were under the influence…
As far as brain development and that sort of thing goes, the boys did receive a much gentler sentence than if they had been tried for first-degree felony charges as adults, as Judge Lipps reminded the perpetrators. How lenient to receive a minimum of one year in juvenile facility with the possibility of having his record wiped clean at 21! Adults don’t have things so lucky. But it wasn’t lenient enough for Madison, who says he will appeal it.