Dad of Stanford Rapist: Don't Judge Son on '20 Minutes'

Pre-sentencing letter gets hammered online
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 6, 2016 6:41 AM CDT
Dad of Stanford Rapist: Don't Judge Son on '20 Minutes'
In this June 2 photo, Brock Turner, 20, right, makes his way into the Santa Clara Superior Courthouse in Palo Alto, Calif.   (Dan Honda/Bay Area News Group via AP)

A rape case at Stanford continues to make headlines, first because of the defendant's sentence and the victim's powerful statement, and now because of another statement made by the 20-year-old assailant's father. Swimmer Brock Turner received a sentence of six months in jail—he could have gotten 14 years—after being convicted of raping a passed-out young woman. In a letter written to the judge before sentencing, his father argued for just such leniency, reports the Guardian. Brock Turner shouldn't have his life ruined over "20 minutes of action," wrote Dan Turner, adding that his son had suffered enough already.

“He will never be his happy go lucky self with that easy going personality and welcoming smile,” he wrote. “His every waking minute is consumed with worry, anxiety, fear, and depression. You can see this in his face, the way he walks, his weakened voice, his lack of appetite.” The letter was made public Sunday in a tweet by Stanford law professor Michele Dauber, who helped shape the school's new sexual assault policies, and it's being met with a barrage of criticism online. "Tone-deaf," says a post at the Huffington Post. It's a "near-perfect complement" to the victim's statement, writes Christina Cauterucci at Slate. "Dan Turner defends his son with nearly every thin excuse his son's victim demolishes in her letter; he elevates all the rape-apologist, victim-diminishing tropes she exposes as misogynist garbage." (More rape stories.)

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