A woman in Newport Beach was raped by her Uber driver on the way home from a social gathering, according to charges filed by prosecutors in Southern California on Wednesday.
District Judge John McKeon sentenced an unnamed man to 60 days in prison plus a suspended 30-year prison sentence (which he will avoid if he completes a sex-offender treatment program and other parole conditions) after the man pleaded guilty to repeatedly raping his own daughter, who was 12 years old at the time. Read the rest
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh had thoughts yesterday on the problems faced by Donald Trump, whose campaign for president is falling apart after a recording emerged of him boasting about sexually assaulting women.
Tonight the New York Times published two women who claim to have experienced acts of sexual abuse by the Republican candidate for President of the United States, Donald J. Trump. With great speed the Trump campaign declared these claims "fiction."
This "fiction" claim seems to spit in the face of his soul-less, truth-allergic campaign manager Kellyanne Conway. Conway has been clear, pounding the networks over and over, justifying Trump's shockingly ugly display at the second Presidential debate, that all women accusers must be heard. Even when presented with sworn depositions by the women that said events never occurred! Conway has also falsely accused Hillary Clinton of trying silence these women.
Will it be that Kellyanne only thinks long debunked allegations need to be heard? Will Kellyanne call for Trump to explain these allegations, or that of his raping a 13 year old? Will Kellyanne now try to silence these women? How can they blame Hillary?
Prompted by allegations made against celebrity Bill Cosby, California is ending its 10-year statute of limitations on rape.
Current California law requires prosecution for rape to begin within 10 years of the alleged offence, with some exceptions. Under the new legislation, SB813, there will be no time limit. The change will also apply to crimes for which the statute of limitations has not expired as of 1 January 2017.
Senator Connie Leyva, who introduced the bill, said it told victims of sexual assault that they could seek justice "regardless of when they are ready to come forward".
"Rapists should never be able to evade legal consequences simply because an arbitrary time limit has expired."
Historical cases (such as many of Cosby's victims) are not addressed in the bill, as it will not apply retroactively to crimes that reach the 10-year-limit before Jan 1, 2017. Which is to say, Dec 31, 2006 is the last date for crimes to escape the new legislation.
The U.S. has a patchwork of state-level sexual assault laws, with 43 applying a statute of limitations to rape. The lengths differ widely: Minnesota has the shortest, at 3 years, whereas Ohio's is 20 years. Read the rest
Christopher Simcox, who co-founded the now-disbanded Minuteman Civil Defense Corps white supremacist militia group, received a prison sentence of over 19 years today from an Arizona court. Read the rest
According to Mayor Libby Schaaf, Police Chief Sean Whent resigned for "personal reasons," and not because of a report in the East Bay Express that revealed that at least 14 of his officers (along with 4 Alameda County sheriff's deputies and a federal officer) trafficked and had sex with a prostitute who was underage when the trafficking began. Read the rest
Aaron Persky, the California judge who let rapist Brock Turner off with a 6-month term in county jail, was removed from a new case Tuesday after prosecutors complained they lacked confidence in him.
"We lack confidence that Judge (Aaron) Persky can fairly participate in this upcoming hearing in which a male nurse sexually assaulted an anesthetised female patient," Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen said in a statement. He called the move "rare and carefully considered". ...
Stacey Capps, chief trial deputy for the District Attorney's office, said the new case was reassigned to another judge and a hearing was held on Tuesday afternoon. She said that the victim was "particularly vulnerable" factored into the move. Capps said in the new case, Cecil Webb stands accused of touching the vagina and breast of a woman who was anesthetised ahead of a surgery at a Santa Clara hospital in November 2014.
The 471 pages of documents released Friday by the Santa Clara County Superior Court show that Turner lied to investigators about having no experience with using drugs and alcohol before college.
The East Bay Times reports that "at least 10 prospective jurors" refused to participate in Judge Aaron Persky's next trial in protest at the cozy 6-month sentence (out in 12 weeks) he gave Stanford rapist Brock Turner.
"I can't be here, I'm so upset," one juror told the judge while the lawyers were picking the jury in the misdemeanor receiving stolen property case, according to multiple sources.
Another prospective juror stood up and said, "I can't believe what you did," referring to the six-month county jail sentence Persky handed to Turner, who was convicted for sexually assaulting an unconscious intoxicated woman last year outside a Stanford University frat party.
In each case, the judge said, "I understand," thanked the prospective juror and excused her or him from duty.
Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden wrote an open letter to Turner's victim today, praising her willingness to speak out about her treatment by her attacker and by the legal system.
Read the rest
And I am filled with furious anger — both that this happened to you and that our culture is still so broken that you were ever put in the position of defending your own worth.
It must have been wrenching — to relive what he did to you all over again. But you did it anyway, in the hope that your strength might prevent this crime from happening to someone else. Your bravery is breathtaking.
You are a warrior — with a solid steel spine.
In a pre-sentencing letter to the judge released today by the New York Times, convicted rapist Brock Turner fails to own any responsibility for raping an unconscious woman behind a trash dumpster on Jan. 17, 2015. Turner's plea letter reads like a laundry list of white male privilege lost. It touched the white male judge in all the right places. Turner begs for leniency in his letter, and he got it.
Before we knew him as Frodo Baggins in Peter Jackson's blockbuster Lord of the Rings film trilogy, Elijah Wood was a child actor. In a recent interview with Britain's Sunday Times, Wood spoke out on sexual abuse of young actors in Hollywood, and says “a lot of vipers” roam the upper echelons of the entertainment biz, preying on naïvete and eagerness for fame.
“Clearly something major was going on in Hollywood. It was all organized. There are a lot of vipers in this industry, people who only have their own interests in mind,” he told the Times.
“There is darkness in the underbelly. What bums me about these situations is that the victims can’t speak as loudly as the people in power. That’s the tragedy of attempting to reveal what is happening to innocent people: they can be squashed, but their lives have been irreparably damaged.”
“If you’re innocent, you have very little knowledge of the world and you want to succeed,” he added. “People with parasitic interests will see you as their prey. What upsets me about these situations is that the victims can’t speak as loudly as the people in power.”
Wood is now 35. As a child, he performed with fellow child star alongside Macaulay Culkin in “The Good Son,” and had a part in the “Flipper” remake. He said his mother, Debra, protected him from predators back then, and he “never went to parties where that kind of thing was going on.”
Here's a non-paywalled report that quotes extensively from the Times: Elijah Wood Calls Out Hollywood's Pedophile Problem [the daily beast]
Owen Labrie received a light one-year jail sentence after sexually assaulting an underage girl at his New England prep school. While his victim was subjected to scorn and disbelief from peers and the media, Labrie was coddled every step of the way, turning down a plea deal that would have seen him out in weeks and being mythologized in a pretentious Vanity Fair profile. But now he's going to serve his sentence early, because he just can't follow the rules while he appeals his verdict.
A judge in Merrimack County Superior Court said Owen Labrie would begin his one-year jail sentence immediately.
"You are unlikely to abide by any conditions," Judge Larry Smukler said. "I don't relax conditions because you can't comply with them."…
Smukler, in sentencing him in October and permitting him to remain free on bail pending appeal, told Labrie he would be "exceedingly foolish" to violate his bail conditions.
Labrie's light sentence hinged, as Vice put it, on the fact his underage victim didn't "clearly express her lack of consent." Jurors failed to convict him of felony rape, instead applying a 90s-era computer grooming law in what was described as a "bizarre" verdict.
Those sympathetic to Labrie point to the felony computer charge, arguing it was never meant to be applied to texting teenagers. Had Labrie reached out to the girl via phone, he would have been spared a lifetime on the sexual offender registry. Then again, these were no ordinary messages: Labrie and his peers shared email templates and strategies for scoring with younger girls; Labrie even had a list of potential targets, with the girl at the top, in capital letters.Read the rest