Judge Sentences Man to 5 Days in Jail for Child Porn
He argues child porn is widely available and punishments are too harsh
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 30, 2016 11:19 AM CST
Judge Jack Weinstein sentenced a man convicted of possessing child pornography to five days in jail, arguing that taking him away from his five children would deprive them of a role model.   (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews, File)

(Newser) NBC News has a shocking story about a federal judge in New York City who gave a man facing up to 10 years in prison for child pornography a sentence of only five days in jail—time he'd already served following his initial arrest in 2013. Investigators found the man—whose identity NBC agreed to keep anonymous—in possession of two dozen photos and videos of girls as young as 3 being sexually abused by adult men. But instead of giving the man, who pleaded guilty, years in prison, Judge Jack Weinstein ignored sentencing guidelines, which he argues are too harsh on people convicted of possessing child pornography. In his decision, he claims taking the man—a father of five—away from his children would be "depriving them of a loving father and role model."

The 94-year-old judge argues sentencing guidelines for child pornography don't balance the "need to protect the public" against the "need to avoid excessive punishment," NBC reports. He points out the man didn't abuse children himself and that the Internet makes child pornography easily available to all Americans. The man has claimed he wasn't looking for child pornography, it just "kept popping up" when he was trying to download regular porn. Others are "appalled" by Weinstein's decision, arguing that anyone who even looks at child pornography is perpetuating the abuse of children. "It ends up leading inexorably to the rape of children," a former federal judge tells NBC. Read the full story here.
 

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