CRESCENT CITY, Calif. (AP) — A California prosecutor says a man convicted of raping a relative received a sentence that is too lenient, comparing the monthslong jail term to the case of former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner.
A judge sentenced 20-year-old Nolan Bruder last week to 240 days in jail and three years’ probation for drugging and raping a family member on July 11 in Crescent City, The Los Angeles Times reported Friday. Bruder will likely serve half his term because of California sentencing laws.
Bruder admitted to smoking potent marijuana concentrate with the victim, who said no when he asked to have sex with her. She testified that she became so impaired that she didn’t recognize Bruder when she ultimately relented to having sex.
“Eventually it got to the point where I couldn’t say no anymore, like, I didn’t know how to, so I ended up having sex with him,” the victim told investigators.
Del Norte County probation officials recommended a six-year prison sentence because Bruder “showed no real remorse and seemed smug,” they wrote in a report to the judge.
Bruder wrote a one-page letter to the judge saying, “I am still struggling with the everlasting shame of the events of that night.”
Judge William Follet said the “stigma” of the crime and having to register for life as a sex offender persuaded him to sentence Bruder to jail time instead of a lengthy prison sentence.
“I could not disagree more,” said Del Norte District Attorney Dale Trigg, adding that the case was “more egregious than Brock Turner.”
Bruder appears to have benefited from committing his crime before a new law took effect that mandates prison for sexual assault convictions, Trigg said.
Lawmakers passed the measure after Turner was sentenced to six months in jail for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman outside an on-campus fraternity house. He served half that time.
In declining to send Turner to prison, Santa Clara County Judge Aaron Persky cited the “severe impact” the conviction would have on the Olympic-caliber swimmer.
Persky’s sentence sparked nationwide outage and prompted a recall campaign. Recall organizers say they will begin collecting signatures next month to put the effort on the November ballot.
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