Stanford Sex Offender Brock Turner Asks For New Trial, Lawyer Says 'There Was No Rape'

A lawyer for Brock Turner, whose perceived light sentence sparked national outrage, filed a brief claiming he didn’t receive a fair trial and focusing on the intoxication of his victim.

Convicted sex offender Brock Turner, who sexually assaulted an unconscious woman while attending Stanford University, is appealing his conviction and asking for a new trial. Lawyers for Mr. Turner filed a 172-page brief filed Friday, claiming he didn’t receive a fair trial, and focusing on the intoxication of his victim, according to The New York Times. The appeal comes at a curious time, considering the widespread anger at the perceived leniency of Turner’s six-month jail sentence, of which he only served three months, and prevalence of sexual misconduct stories currently pervading our national consciousness.

In an interview with Northern California NBC affiliate KNTV, Turner's legal adviser John Tompkins stated, "We are saying that what happened was not a crime." Turner’s lawyers claim his trial was compromised due to limits on the number of character witnesses they could use, the inability of the jury to consider later offenses, and the prosecution’s contention that the assault occurred “behind the dumpster,” prejudiced the jury since it "implied moral depravity, callousness and culpability on the appellant's part because of the inherent connotations of filth, garbage, detritus and criminal activity frequently associated with dumpsters," according to the appeal document. In conclusion, Tompkins stated flat out, “There was no rape.”

These are comments Brock Turner’s victim, known only as Emily Doe, would certainly take issue with. “Rape is the absent of consent,” she said in her widely read victim statement, posted on the website Buzzfeed. “You should have never done this to me,” she said, while detailing the shards of memories she has from the fateful night of her assault, and the devastating impact it had on her life.

It was just past 1 a.m. on January 18, 2015 when two Stanford graduate students observed Turner on top of the unconscious partially clothed girl, whom he had met at a frat party on campus.  When they confronted him, he ran, only stopping after they tackled him. He later admitted to vaginally penetrating his victim with his fingers and dry-humping her. He claimed it was consensual, despite the fact that her blood-alcohol level was later determined to be 0.22%, which is beyond the level of severe impairment, and that she had no memory of meeting him.

Brock Turner was found guilty of assault with intent to rape an intoxicated woman, sexually penetrating an intoxicated person with a foreign object, and sexually penetrating an unconscious person with a foreign object in March, 2016. Despite these felony convictions, Judge Aaron Persky sentenced Turner to a mere six months in county jail. The prosecution had recommended six-years.

Turner’s perceived light sentence led to online petitions calling for Persky’s removal from the bench, and when Turner was released after three months due to good behavior, armed protestors appeared outside his parent’s Ohio home. In January of this year, Turner’s mug shot was used in a criminal justice textbook next to the definition of rape.
As part of his appeal, Turner seeks to have the requirement that he be registered as a lifelong sex offender thrown out. In a statement Saturday, Santa Clara County district attorney Jeff Rosen said “Brock Turner received a fair trial and was justly convicted,” adding, “His conviction will be upheld. Nothing can ever roll back Emily Doe’s legacy of raising the world’s awareness about sexual assault.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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