Monday, June 11, 2007

Judge Thomas Wilson has just overturned the sex-crime sentence of Genarlow Wilson. The young Mr. Wilson engaged in oral sex with a 15 year old. He was 17 at the time, and is currently 21 years old. He has served 28 months of a 10 year sentence for aggravated child molestation. Upon reviewing the case, Judge Wilson dropped the charge to misdemeanor child molestation and sentenced the perpetrator to 12 months in prison including time already served, which means that Wilson is now a free man. Because of the misdemeanor status, Wilson will not even be required to register as a sex offender. Wilson’s lawyer, BJ Bernstein, applauded the decision, saying “this has been a 2 ½ year fight over consensual teenage sex”. Even Jimmy Carter has spoken out in support of Genarlow Wilson.

Geez, where do I begin? First, the fact that the phrase “misdemeanor child molestation” even exists in our legal community is obscene. Anyone who would downgrade child molestation to the level of a speeding ticket should be forced to have these misdemeanor offenders baby-sit their kids for a month. We’ll see their opinions on the matter change quickly. And if Judge Wilson has a teenage daughter, I’d like to know his opinion on allowing the offender to take her out on a few dates.

And Mr. Bernstein is whining about his fight over consensual teenage sex, which again is somewhat of a misnomer. There is no such thing as consensual sex with a 15 year old child. It’s the equivalent of recording a symphony for the deaf. A 15 year old child lacks the psychiatric maturity to consent to sex in the same manner that a grown woman lacks the ability to consent to sex if she were severely intoxicated, thus anyone who engages in sexual activity with someone like this has just committed a crime – regardless of how old the offender is at the time. Bernstein is way off on this one, but then again he is a criminal defense attorney. He makes money by being way off on matters like this.

Of course, it’s no surprise that Jimmy Carter has gone on record supporting Wilson. It is a favorite past-time of the bleeding hearts to advocate for the rights of criminals with little mention of the rights of the victim, and yes there is a victim in this case. Notice the child's parents haven't been given the oppurtunity to give their thoughts on what should happen to Wilson.

I doubt Jimmy Carter cares about the 15 year old girl, and he obviously isn’t concerned that having sex with a 15 year old is considered a misdemeanor in the state of Georgia. It seems to me that we should all be concerned about this, especially in light of cases like Kelsey Smith, the 18 year old who was abducted and murdered in Kansas. We’re going in the wrong direction here. Giving someone 12 months for child molestation is not going to deter others from committing similar crimes. Exactly what message are we trying to send? Not that Carter or Bernstein care. In their eyes, society is to blame whenever someone rapes a child, and the rapist need not be punished for something that society has done. And when Scooter Libby gets a longer prison sentence than someone who has sex with a 15 year old child, that's evidence that something is terribly wrong in this country. Talk about screwed up priorities!

I salute the prosecuting attorney. He will no doubt come under heavy fire from the criminal-rights people, but I hope he sticks to his guns. Several race organizations are already rallying against him, trying to turn this into a race issue. The simple fact is that if Wilson were white no one would give a damn about him getting 10 years for this. Seems like these days the only thing worse than putting a man in prison is putting a black or hispanic man in prison.

The simple fact is that Wilson committed a crime. Even worse, he committed a sex crime against a minor and crimes like this need to be punished. 12 months is hardly enough. If we don’t start protecting our kids, then no child is going to be safe in this country.


ZMan! said...

Come on, think back to your childhood or your parents, I bet they'd be in prison as well.

This is insane. And the laws are insane and punishing thousands of young kids.

Check this out, you'll be shocked:

ZMan! said...

I want to direct you to one issue on my blog, but I also encourage you to read more of my blog.


The National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (“NACDL”) is a nationwide, non-profit, voluntary association of criminal defense lawyers founded in 1958 to improve the quality of representation of the accused and to advocate for the preservation of constitutional rights in criminal cases. The NACDL has a membership of more than 12,800 attorneys and 92 state, local and international affiliate organizations with another 35,000 members including private criminal defense lawyers, public defenders, active U.S. military defense counsel, law professors and judges committed to preserving fairness within America’s criminal justice system. In these comments NACDL urges the Attorney General to repeal 28 CFR Part 72 because the regulation, as promulgated, violates the ex post facto clause of the Constitution, and will cause widespread confusion and instability in the efforts of many convicted sex offenders to comply with the law and maintain a non-offending lifestyle.

* I do not believe in registries period, but if the sex offender laws are kept, why discriminate? I DEMAND WE HAVE A CRIMINAL HISTORY REGISTRY, SO I KNOW IF YOU ARE A MURDERER, GANG MEMBER, DRUG DEALER/USER, DRUNK, THIEF! IT'S MY RIGHT! Why won't this fly? Because then the senator, mayor, governor, president, celebrities or you may be on a publicly accessible registry to face the shame. But why not? Why discriminate? So the rich can implement their "master plan?"

* When will people ever realize no matter how tough on crime, all the zero tolerance, all the registries in the world will not prevent a murderer from murdering, a thief from stealing, a dealer from dealing, a user from using, a rapist from raping....accusations on any sex crime, child abuse, or domestic violence will literally nail your butt to the wall! No DNA has to be present, No violence has to be present..... HEARSAY ALONE IS LITERALLY NAILING THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE TO THE WALL BECAUSE THESE LAWS ARE BIASED.

* Living is already almost impossible for "sex offenders", and the more and more laws that are passed daily, eventually they are going to explode, and it won't be a pretty sight. You must be realistic when making laws, these draconian laws make it impossible for anyone to live ANY type of life. Everyone is for treatment and punishing those violent offenders who are making other sex offenders lives hell, but like I said, we must be realistic.

* For all the people being charged with Child pornography, is the law checking the computers to make sure they are not infected with a virus? Many people are ignorant when it comes to computers, and if they click on some attachment in an email, their machine can become infected with a virus, trojan, spyware, adaware program which stores child porn on their machine. Are these so called "experts" checking this? Or ignoring this possibility?

* The issue with sex offenders Internet email addresses, IM names, etc being collected, this is another "feel good" law that will not stop crime. If someone wanted to commit a new crime, they'd create a new email address and commit the crime. This is stupid and won't work. It is just another waste of the taxpayers money.

* Think!! Come up with solutions, not "feel good" laws, which make it harder and harder for sex offenders to get on with their lives.

* "Buffer Zones" are a false sense of security!

* "Buffer Zones" are banishing people from their town, state, and possibly the country!

* "Buffer Zones" create homelessness, which costs society lost productivity, individual dignity, and creates additional problems for enforcing any accurate registry!

* "Buffer Zones" do nothing, except banish! It could be 50 miles and if someone wanted to re-offend, they'd just get in a car and drive!

* It should be MANDATORY that anyone in prison get therapy, and out of prison, if needed. Therapy does work. If you just lock them up without therapy, when they get out, they will be worse off. Therapy teaches people how to not act out and help, regardless of what the general public thinks. Just ask a therapist.

* We need to STOP this hysteria and get sex offenders the help they need.

* You can pass all the laws you want but without therapy this "mob" mentality will not solve anything!

* I am sick of politicians using children to get their laws passed! Who would want to vote against anything that is "for the children"?

* "Stranger Danger" is a smoke screen & hype! Most child sexual offenses occur by someone the child knows, like a family member or close friend!

* These laws are being passed by politicians using sex offenders as scape goats, for votes!

* Registries do NOT protect anyone or prevent crimes!

* Registries are punishing sex offenders as well as their families and children, and opening them up to vigilantism. DON'T THE FAMILIES AND CHILDREN OF sex OFFENDERS COUNT? They are suppose to be "for the children", right?

* Registries are NOT being updated in a timely fashion, so the public is getting false information! How is this helping the public or protecting them when they cannot rely on them?

* Registries are putting families and children of sex offenders in a public position to be socially outcast and discriminated against with regard to employment, housing, schooling, etc!

* About 90% of the people on the registry are NOT violent offenders that these laws were meant for in the first place!

* These laws cost millions, if not billions to enforce, and they cause prison over-population, which is already a problem, especially in California, and taxpayers pay for all this.

* GPS does not prevent sexual crimes! Another false sense of security which cost tons of money! Plus the offenders are supposed to pay for this, which will make them eventually go homeless. MAKE THE TAX PAYERS WHO WANT THESE LAWS PAY FOR THEM!

* These laws cause sex offenders to go underground and into hiding, due to the strict nature of the laws! How is this protecting anyone?

* These laws are all about money for law enforcement and votes for politicians. Prison is a business! Politicians are salaried and want to get elected/re-elected! Law enforcement get paid for people in jails, prisons or on the registry!

* These laws blatantly disregard the United States constitutional rights of all citizens! (i.e. ex-post facto, due process & others)

* These laws are cruel and unusual punishment! A sex offender cannot go to a fast food restaurant which has a playground! Why? They have just as much of a right as you to get a burger! Plus they cannot go anywhere kids congregate. (i.e. Amusement parks, Movie theaters, the list is endless)

* Sex offenders can go to church, but must leave immediately afterwards. If a sex offender owns a business and someone decides to put a church or school next door, they have to now sell their business and move. This is not right, move the church or school, the sex offender was there first!

* These laws continue to punish people even after a sentence has been served, and they are trying to get on with their lives! (i.e. ex-post facto)

* These laws are driven by fear-mongering, opportunistic politicians and will do nothing to actually protect children!

* There are over one million women and children whose lives are inter-twined with a sex offender in the United States. They should matter too!

* Follow the money trail, these laws are conveyor-belt laws to benefit law enforcement! They get paid for the number of people in jail, prison or on the registry!

* They are currently a one-size-fits all for sex offenders! Not all sex offenders are violent offenders that these laws are supposed to be for anyway!

* They are modern day witch hunts and a scarlett letter!

* If sex Offenders are re-offending, why do the registries grow each day? Because new people are being added daily for stuff like "public urination", "mooning", "consensual sex", "young children playing 'Doctor'" and various other minor offenses that we need not worry about. We need to worry about violent offenders!

* Now they are trying to make it a law that a sex offender, if they have kids, cannot "take a picture" of anyone under 18. This is totally stupid! Can't even take Christmas pictures, birthday pictures, etc!

* Also, because a sex offender owns a business in town, many people are trying to get the business shut down! The sex offender had the business for awhile. If you don't like it, MOVE!!!!

Anonymous said...

What I think is disgusting is the fact that the state can get involved in the affairs of teenagers. They're old enough at 15 to know what they're doing. You're advocating putting someone in jail based on their age, and because they had a girlfriend that happened to be two years younger?

Okay, so it wasn't a wise move, doing what they did, but you're going to throw someone in prison over a high school relationship? That's not the affair of the state.

Remember your high school days? I'm pretty sure that happened all the time as it does now. It doesn't really hurt anyone as far as I know. Just leave them alone already I say, and that goes double for the government.

John Washburn said...

This was not a high school relationship. This was a party with drugs and alcohol. Wilson and six other men filmed themselves having sex with a 17 year old who was "severely intoxicated". According to witnesses, their behavior was aggressive and bordered on violence. Then, they filmed the 15 year old performing oral sex on them. His friends pled guilty to lesser charges to avoid trial. Wilson refused to deal and went to trial. After reviewing the evidence, a jury found him guilty of aggravated child molestation.

And regardless what you may THINK, the fact is that a 15 year old is still a child, and a child is UNABLE to consent to sex of any kind - again, no more so than someone under the influence. Would you be okay with laws that allowed for sex with intoxicated individuals? Adolescent girls are susceptible to coercion and intimidation, especially from older people. Would you be comfortable with the notion that your 15 year old daughter is capable of consenting to sex?

And the reason we need laws like these, what you call government intrusion, is because of people like ZMan who consider sex offenders as victims in need of treatment.

ZMan, you have no clinical evidence that rape and molestation are symptoms of mental illness. There is no evidence of successful treatment. These people are criminals, not victims of disease. And if their crimes make their lives difficult, then so be it. Don't think for a second that I'll shed a tear for them. If they wanted an easier life, then it's as simple as keeping their pants on and their hands to themselves. If not, then they can rot in jail and burn in hell for all I care. They ruin the lives of women and children, and all you can do is weep for them because of how "harsh" their punishment is.

Anonymous said...

I dunno, I still think that if teenagers want to go get themselves drunk, and do really stupid things, that's their prerogative. I know, it's radical, but me, I'd stay away from that sort of thing. I'm not saying they "deserve" it, but they made all the decisions.

Obviously I know a lot of 15 year olds. And, like most high school students, it's a mixed bag. My freshman friends are responsible and not going to do anything stupid. However, a lot of 15 year olds are, and again, that's their problem.

Obviously I wouldn't support rape, but that's not what I'm reading here. It sounds like the participants were drunken fools.

Again, I really hate to sound heartless, but the obvious choice would have been don't go to the party. No one made them go. They made unwise decisions. I don't see why every high school kid that is in a similar, but innocuous situation, should be dubbed a child molester for that.

ZMan! said...

Come on people, how many of you or your parents would be in prison right now if these laws were in affect when you were growing up?

This "sex hysteria" has got to stop, and I do think it has a great deal with TV, movies, music, video games, crap like Jerry Springer, etc.

The morals in this world are being corrupted.

Check this out:

Anonymous said...

Zman, you aren't making your position look very good. We're coming from two separate viewpoints here. While I don't think this guy in the story should be put in jail, rapists and the like, real ones, are criminals, and should be punished. Also, you can't blame TV and video games etc. for it. There's no one to blame but the criminal himself.

John Washburn said...

Robert, I see what you're saying. It just seems to me that someone with Libertarian viewpoints like yourself would be a little more disturbed about an activist judge overturning a jury's verdict.

The bottom line is this kid broke the law. He was given a chance to plea deal, but refused and took his chances with a jury. He was convicted and punished under the law. The judge has no right to overturn their verdict, and as you said he made a BIG mistake. Now, he has to live with that.

Zman, I have no idea what you're talking about. Are you for or against rapists and child molesters?

Anonymous said...

Yeah, but John, libertarians don't believe in laws like that. Therefore, I don't care if it's all nice and legal, it's still wrong. That's what I have a problem with.

I don't have any opinion on "activist judges." I don't think that laws such as this should exist, and so I don't believe judges should be interpreting them one way or the other.

John Washburn said...

Fair enough, Robert. You are a man committed to your beliefs and you defend those with reason rather than billigerent nonsense, and I respect that.