You might not recognize this jurist's face, or even his name, but you will most surely remember why he made the news about three months back. Take a good look. Need a hint? The punishment he meted out for a rapist? Remember now? The assailant was a teacher. The victim was his 14 year old student and after the attack, she killed herself.
Okay, final clue:
The judge sentenced the teacher to one month in jail, arguing that the girl shared responsibility for her rape because she appeared “older than her chronological age” and “as much in control of the situation” as her teacher.
Sure, now you got it. And he sentenced the rapist to what ended up being less than a month in jail.
Well, seems justice by this justice hasn't really become any saner since that debacle of jurisprudence. Judge Baugh recently heard a case of vandalism. Evidently shooting out windows with a BB gun is far more significant and heinous than rape.
District Judge G. Todd Baugh sentenced 21-year-old Brandon Turell to 10 years in prison, with five of those years suspended, and ordered him to pay about $13,600 in restitution, reported the Billings Gazette.
What happens next though puts the frosting on the cake. The judge gives the vandalism perp 10 years, suspends five of them, and caps it with a large fine. Then he lectures the convicted fast food service worker on how he should get a better (higher paying) job so he can pay back the victims quickly.
Wait, how's he going to pay back the victims quickly if he's doing 5 years in jail? If he can suspend the rapist's sentence down to a month, and he's so concerned about the victims getting restitution, then why not let this man free to work to pay off the victims?
And it gets a cherry on top of the frosting on this delicious cake.
The judge asked Turell, who bonded out of jail about 18 months ago, what he had done to pay back his victims, and Turell said he had been working at Burger King.
“Why can’t you get a real job?” Baugh asked.
Turell said he made $9.50 an hour working at the fast food restaurant, and Baugh again suggested he get a “real job” that paid better.
A real job? Is this judge serious? $9.50/hr is two bucks above minimum wage. If he doesn't think making that kind of money is real money, then what does that say about the minimum wage?
This jurist is totally out of whack with the real world. Justice in this judge's hands is a dangerous thing. Rapists go free. Rape victims are disposable (the girl victim is dead). But vandalism victims are sacrosanct.
Oh, and how stupid is it to order someone to pay for the damages they caused, then take away their only way to pay the victims back by jailing the criminal for 5 years? I don't know how much they pay prisoners in Montana, but I gotta believe they pay a lot less for punching out license plates than they do for serving a Whopper with fries at the King.
Pity the fools who live in Montana if this is their version of justice.