A state judge in Dallas is facing criticism after sentencing a high school rapist to 45 days in jail and 250 hours of probation and implying that the girl who was sexually assaulted was promiscuous.
The assault occurred in 2011. Sir Young, who was 18 at that time, admits he sexually assaulted a 14-year-old girl that he knew. Although he faced a maximum of 20 years in prison, Young will now serve a few weeks in jail. (Via Dallas County)
State District Judge Jeanine Howard told The Dallas Morning News that the victim “wasn’t the victim she claimed to be” and that Young “is not your typical sex offender.”
Howard justified her ruling by citing the victim’s medical records, history of sexual partners and a report that she had given birth recently. She also mentioned text messages from the victim to Young, agreeing to have sex with him but just not at the school — where the assault happened.
The judge also faced criticism over rules for Young’s probation: the offender won’t have to stay away from children or attend sex offender treatment, both typical punishments for the crime. (Via The Dallas Morning News)
And, in an odd twist, Young was ordered to conduct community service at a Dallas rape crisis center before the center refused to allow him to work there.
“It flies in the face of logic. First of all, in that you would ask someone to do their community supervision for the population that has been directly affected by the exact crime.” (Via KTVT)
The victim’s mother was reportedly “livid” about the situation, and she denied that her daughter had ever been pregnant, as the judge said. Some members of the local media scolded Judge Howard for the decision.
“I’m not quite sure what a local judge was thinking when she sentenced a confessed rapist to work at a rape crisis center. But based on community outrage, neither do you.” (Via WFAA)
Recusing herself from the case to defend her ruling to the public, Howard continued to defend her decision, saying “There are rape cases that deserve life. There are rape cases that deserve 20 years. Every now and then you have one of those that deserve probation.” (Via Dallas County)
The prosecution says they will work with the new judge in the case to change Young’s probation requirements, including one that says if the young man follows his probation orders for five years, the conviction will come off his record.