Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few months, you know Brock Turner. Turner was convicted of sexually assaulting a woman and was released from jail after only three months. His terrible actions, lack of apology, lenient sentence and early release sparked major outrage among many.
How is it that someone can commit rape and see the inside of a jail cell for less than one year? If rape does not constitute at least a one-year sentence, what are some crimes that deserve one year worth of jail time? What are some crimes that received the same amount of time? I've compiled a list of five offenses that will land you at least six months in jail.
Disclaimer: all crimes are serious, and calling the following crimes “less serious” represents my own beliefs. In no way am I saying these crimes are OK and I do not condone the actions listed. However, I believe the following crimes pose a less serious threat to others and compared to the charges of Turner, prove that our society has something wrong with how we approach rape culture.
1. Driving With A Suspended License
Many people get their license suspended because they do not have money to pay parking tickets and traffic fines. If a driver continues to drive with a suspended license, they will likely face a strict sentence and usually up to a year jail time.
According to California law, vandalizing property can land you in jail for one to three years along with hefty fines, reaching up to $10,000.
Furthermore, according to California law trespassing can land you in jail for six months to three years.
4. Two Marijuana Possession Charges
One count of marijuana possession leads to short jail time and two weed possession convictions can carry a sentience of up to a year. Our society is basically saying that smoking a joint is worse than sexual assault.
5. Possessing Steroids
Carrying steroids, and other prescribed drugs (ex. Vicodin), that are not prescribed to you can land you in jail for a year and a large $2,500 fine.
In any case, Turner is facing more prison time than many people who have committed sexual assault. Just let that sit for a minute.
It is essential that we change sexual assault sentencing laws. We cannot forget, or move on, or let it go. We have to work toward a new standard of how our society approaches rape culture. We cannot let another Brock Turner get away with only three months.