How is this guy still sitting the bench??
Judge Aaron Persky came under A TON of heat for his light sentencing in the rape case of former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner.
Now he's receiving MORE heat because it's come to light he doled out a far harsher punishment to a man who committed similar crimes — which just may prove bias!
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Raul Ramirez is a 32-year-old immigrant from El Salvador who was recently convicted of sexually assaulting his female roommate. What's shocking about the case is Persky sentenced Ramirez to three years in prison as part of the plea agreement signed back in March.
To compare, Raul received three years in STATE PRISON versus Turner who only got six months in country jail WITH probation. Uhm, how is this fair? Oh, on top of that, the El Salvadoran's bail was set at $200,000 — that's $50,000 more than Brock's!
If you're even just the tiniest bit curious if Persky has a bias, Stanford law professor Michele Dauber, who has been one of the main voices in recalling the controversial judge, told TheWrap that the sentencing is PLENTY evidence of a bias in the Turner ruling. Dauber even said:
"If he wasn't, these sentences would look more similar to each other. The crimes are quite similar."
What's more interesting is Ramirez's former defense attorney, Alexander Cross, who represented the convict while his family could afford him, said that the 32-year-old's sentencing was pretty standard. However, he did mention that the Stanford swimmer's case was an anomaly!
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In Raul's case, he apparently had sent his roommate a "love letter" before going in her room and fingering her against her will until the girl started crying, at which point the man stopped. He was later arrested in his home back in November 2014.
Similar to Turner, Ramirez didn't have a criminal record; however, unlike the former Stanford student, Ramirez took responsibility for his actions and pleaded guilty to the crime and apologized. Michele commented on this, saying:
"Ordinarily, pleading guilty entitles you to extra consideration for leniency. Mr. Turner on the other hand, has to this day not accepted responsibility for sexual assault, has never admitted to sexual assault, has never apologized for sexual assault, and forced his matter to trial rather than plead guilty."
IN FACT, the Stanford professor even said that Persky could have reduced the sentence if he wanted to, as it was within his power!
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Ramirez was charged on two accounts — one for assault with intent to commit rape or forced sexual act (California penal Code 220) as well as sexual penetration by a foreign object by force, fear, or threats (penal Code 289a).
The 289a charge carries a three-year prison sentence with it, but in Ramirez's case, the 220 charge was dropped as a result of the plea to the 289, possibly showing special treatment to Brock. Dauber went on saying:
"Had he wanted to make it happen, there's an obvious, simple and easy route to that, which was to have [Ramirez] plead to the 220 rather than the 289. The judge could have found that this was an ‘unusual case' and that it would be in the best interest of justice for him to have probation, just as he found that for Turner."
The professor wrapped up her argument by saying:
"Of these two individuals, it seems to me that the individual who admitted to his offense and apologized for it immediately, took responsibility and pleaded guilty should have been entitled to greater leniency, which makes the bias all the more apparent, [Turner's sentence] is not a sentence that would be given to a defendant who is not an elite, privileged athlete at Stanford."
Dayum! Gavel down.
We're guessing Judge Persky is probably seeing his last days as we're SURE this will cause quite a few waves with people who were already upset!
[Image via YouTube.]
Tags: aaron persky, alexander cross, brock turner, controversy, legal matters, michele dauber, raul ramirez, stanford