Disgraced Stanford swimmer Brock Turner’s currently sitting in protective custody with a few months left on his rape sentence. Meanwhile, his judge is still drawing attention for doling out similarly lenient punishments to other defendants. Turner, of course, received six months in jail after raping an unconscious woman behind a dumpster and possibly taking souvenir photos for his friends. He blamed “party culture” and alcohol for his actions. Persky was soon revealed to have delivered a comparatively harsh sentence to an immigrant defendant in a similar case. In the resulting chaos, Persky was pulled from a sexual assault case, but he hasn’t been removed from the bench. Now, the press has uncovered another lenient sentence that Persky doled out on the same day as Brock Turner’s sentence.
The Guardian has interviewed a Chinese immigrant who nearly died at the hand of her domestic abuser. Jane Doe — who speaks English as a second language — detailed her post-traumatic stress disorder while asking why her abuser could negotiate for a lighter sentence. She stated in court, “As the victim, when I get beaten, can I ask for a better offer? Can I ask for a ‘discount’ beating? There’s no opportunity for me to negotiate.” Doe also describes how Persky lost patience with her courtroom statement and asked her to “speed up.” In the end, the judge gave her abuser “weekend jail,” so as not to endanger his Silicon Valley engineering job. For causing serious bodily injury to his former fiancée, Ming Hsuan Chiang received 12 weekends in jail:
Standing in front of Persky in the small courtroom in Palo Alto, the woman held up large photos showing her injuries. In the images, her face and shirt were covered in blood, and her body was bruised. Her ex-boyfriend, 37-year-old Ming Hsuan Chiang, sat a few feet away.
“Is this acceptable?” Jane Doe said, her voice shaking, as she described the “torture” she faced while displaying the photos to the entire courtroom. Most audience members had showed up for the sentencing of Brock Turner, a former Stanford swimmer convicted of sexual assault. Several gasped at the horrific images; some covered their eyes. “Visible injuries can be treated, but invisible injuries sometimes can last forever,” the woman said during her passionate testimony.
Doe spoke to The Guardian about how her abuser and Turner both received lenient sentences, and the paper echoes critics’ concerns for how Persky favorably treats “privileged men” while seemingly overlooking victims’ testimony. In court, Doe alleged that Chiang “hit me nonstop” and dragged her by the hair, all of which was documented in a police report after outsider 911 calls alerted authorities. She doesn’t understand why Chiang was treated so kindly after reportedly threatening to kill her: “I have evidence. I have witnesses. I have police reports. I have photos.”
For his crime, Chiang faced up to four years in prison, but Persky let him off easy with weekend jail. However, Doe will forever carry the lasting damage of her abuser’s actions.
(Via The Guardian)