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Judge who gave Brock Turner 6 months in jail is cleared of misconduct

Posted by Seth Chazin | Dec 29, 2016 | 0 Comments

Santa Clara County Judge, Aaron Persky, was cleared of misconduct for sentencing former Stanford University student to six months in jail for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman on campus. Because of this judgment, critics across the nation believed it was too lenient of a punishment for the student.

No evidence proved that Judge Persky displayed bias in his treatment of Brock Turner, per the California Commission on Judicial Performance, who investigates complaints of judicial misconduct. The panel received thousands of complaints demanding Persky be punished over the sentence given to Turner, which involved the 21-year-old to register as a sex offender.

Critics accused the judge of favoriting Turner because they both were Stanford athletes, or showing gender bias by failing to acknowledge that campus sexual assault is a serious matter. Others state that due to Turner's ability to afford a private attorney, he could receive a more lenient sentence

The commission concluded that there is no evidence of bias, abuse of authority, or other reasons that would warrant Judge Persky to receive disciplinary actions for judicial misconduct.

Prosecutors argued that Turner should have received six years. Yet, Persky said that he was following a recommendation from the local probation department and took into consideration Turner's clean criminal record and the effect the conviction would have on Turner's life.

Turner has been released from jail after serving three months and remains on probation for three years and is registered as a sex offender for life.

For more:

Washington Post: Judge Cleared of Misconduct in Brock Turner Case

New York Times: Outrage in Stanford Rape Case Over Dueling Statements

About the Author

Seth Chazin

Seth P. Chazin has aggressively defended clients in thousands of felony and misdemeanor cases for over 30 years. He has extensive experience representing criminal defendants in federal and state court, while handling both state and federal appeals as well.


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“The death penalty is a lie, a misguided mistake born of anger and frustration. Capital punishment has become a perverse monument to inequality, to how some lives matter and others do not. It is a violent example of how we protect and value the rich and abandon and devalue the poor. The death penalty is a grim, disturbing shadow formed by the legacy of racial apartheid and bias against the poor that condemns the disfavored among us, but corrupts us all. It’s the perverse symbol elected officials use to strengthen their ‘tough on crime’ reputations and distract us from confronting the causes of violence. It is finally the enemy of grace, redemption and all of us who recognize that each person is more than their worse act.”
- Bryan Stevenson