Northern California judge ousted for Stanford sex assault sentence

07 June, 2018, 11:10 | Author: Sheila Harris
  • The Latest: Early results show voters favoring judge recall

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky was on the path to being removed from office with four years remaining in his term, according to unofficial results from the recall vote.

On Tuesday, Santa Clara County voters agreed and recalled the judge from office after his almost 15-year career on the bench.

Persky has served on the court since 2003.

In a statement that appeared on the Santa Clara County ballot on Tuesday, Persky said: "As a prosecutor, I fought vigorously for victims".

Stanford law professor Michele Dauber, who helped found and spearhead the recall campaign, posted a photo on Twitter late yesterday in front of a TV showing a wide margin of the vote stood in favour of recalling Persky. But the judge said the publicity of Turner's arrest and trial and his loss of a swimming scholarship also factored into the sentence.

Turner wound up serving three months of the six-month prison term because of a policy aimed at reducing jail overcrowding.

Doe's victim-impact statement reverberated across the country with its piercing details recounting the horror of waking up in a hospital to learn she had potentially been penetrated by a stranger - and in her direct confrontation of Turner. "You knocked down both our towers".

"You made me a victim". My damage was internal, unseen.

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Carolee had been walking with her 15-year-old sister to buy candles for a birthday cake. Police said Sharrow, 51, has two previous convictions for driving under the influence.

Turner, then a 20-year-old Stanford University student, was convicted of three felony counts of sexual assault after attacking an unconscious woman next to a dumpster. He said he was following the advice of the probation department, which did not recommend prison time.

Turner was instead sentenced to six months in jail for sexually assaulting a young woman outside a fraternity house on campus. He returned to his parents' home near Dayton, Ohio, where he was required to register as a sex offender, the Dayton Daily News reported at the time.

Legal experts don't expect Persky's ouster will unleash a fresh wave of judicial recalls, though some are concerned that even the threat could push judges to impose harsher sentences, particularly in sex cases. But the successful recall of Judge Aaron Persky Tuesday for that controversial sentence could have a chilling effect on other judges who make hard decisions.

However, in the United States county judges are publicly elected, and as such their positions are subject to review should the community demand it.

"We ask judges to follow the rule of law and not the rule of public opinion", he said at the time. The maximum sentence for his crime would have been 14 years.

"Instead of taking time to heal, I was taking time to recall the night in excruciating detail, in order to prepare for the attorney's questions that would be invasive, aggressive, and created to steer me off course, to contradict myself, my sister, phrased in ways to manipulate my answers", she read.

Evan McMorris-Santoro, the reporter behind the piece tidily sums up Dauber's efforts: "What you have now is people using the political system to call bullshit on the judicial one".

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