The decision to recall judge in Brock Turner case is more than fair

Matt Hasty

Former California judge Aaron Persky, better known as the man who gave Brock Turner a light sentence, was recalled from the judicial bench on June 5.

Turner was convicted of sexually assaulting a young woman near a dumpster in 2015 after the young woman had blacked out from drinking. Turner was sentenced to just six months in jail, to which he only served three months. However, the charges that Turner was convicted of carried a maximum sentence of 14 years.

Turner’s case sparked outrage across the nation because some people thought his sentence was not long enough. Persky said that “a prison sentence would have a severe impact” on Turner.

Judges are supposed to be the enforcers of justice, sentencing people convicted of a crime with a sentence proportionate to their crimes. I do not think that former Judge Persky sentenced Turner with enough time proportionate to his crime—Turner should have received the maximum 14-year sentence.

The ridiculousness of Turner’s sentence is like sentencing a convicted murderer to five years in prison and sentencing a person in possession of marijuana with life in prison. There would be riots in the streets due to the injustice. If the public wouldn’t let a convicted murderer walk free on the streets, why is this any different?

There is speculation that Turner received a lesser sentence due to his athletic ability as a swimmer. 13 Reasons Why, a currently popular Netflix show, attempts to highlight the idea that athletes often receive lesser sentences for their crimes because of what they offer to schools and communities with their athleticism. In the show, student athlete Bryce Walker raped the characters Hannah Baker and Jessica Davis. Walker received only months in prison in the second season of the show once he was convicted of his crimes.

Though Walker’s short sentencing was part of a show, Turner’s was not. He forever changed a young woman’s life when he assaulted her. The young woman now must live with the fact that a person who attacked her received an unfair sentence. The young woman will now possibly go into every relationship she has with lack of trust because of the trauma she endured.

She is going to think Turner’s swimming times and performance are more important than her life and wellbeing.

Trauma takes a tremendous toll on mental health. When trauma is inflicted on another, judges are supposed to sentence people with a punishment that is fit with their crime.

Judge Persky violated the public’s trust and most importantly, the young woman who was sexually assaulted. She trusted Persky to fairly sentence Turner with the punishment he deserved, a trust he violated. Because of this, the ruling on Turner’s case is sufficient grounds for Judge Persky’s recall from the bench.