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Judge Slaps Wrist of Child Rapist
A Montana judge sentenced a child sex offender to 30 days in jail after the man raped a 14 year old student. He called the child “older than her chronological age.” The judge has faced intense criticism after the former high school teacher sentenced the sex offender so lightly. The judge said the victim was “as much in control of the situation” as her teacher, according to the LA Times.
Billings, Montana, where the crime happened is in an uproar as the girl who was raped committed suicide. She would have been 17 years old, and she ended her life as the criminal case was going on. People are protesting and asking that district judge G. Todd Baugh resign. District judge Baugh sentences sex offender Stacey Dean Rambold, 54, to 15 years “on one count of sexual intercourse without consent.” He later suspended all but 31 days and credited the sex offender for one day served. Prosecutors had asked for 20 years in prison.
The district judge himself commented that the girl was a “troubled youth” and that she was in control of the situation as much as her rapist. The girl’s mother was screaming at the judge in the courtroom. Later judge Baugh apologized, saying that what he said was “demeaning of all women” and that “a 14 year old obviously cannot consent.” He kind of took back his apology some by saying, that though the rape was horrible, “given her age…it wasn’t this forcible beat-up rape.” I read that to mean that the judge thinks it was probably not that bad. Because, at 14, being raped can’t be all that bad, as long as you aren’t being beat up, it’s not forcible or horrible or anything.
The victim’s mother commented, “I don’t believe in justice anymore. [My daughter] wasn’t even old enough to get a driver’s license.” A protest-leader who organized people against the judge commented, “judges should be protecting our most vulnerable children, not enabling rapists by placing blame on victims.”