Idaho Judge Randy Stoker recently ruled that Cody Herrera, a man convicted of raping a 14-year-old girl, could be released on probation under the rarely enforced state law that he not engage in sex outside marriage for its duration. In his decision, he mused that the rape probably happened because of “social media.”
The Guardian reports that Judge Stoker took the delivery of his sentence as an opportunity to lecture everyone in the courthouse about how, if he could, he would “eliminate the internet”:
“I have seen dozens, if not hundreds of sex cases since I’ve been on this bench,” the jurist said. “Our society has come to a point of, I don’t even know how to explain it, you know? I am 66 years of age. When I was 19 years of age, the sexual proclivities of young people wasn’t anything, anything like I see today.
“I think it is a direct consequence of the social media system that we have in this country,” Stoker continued. “I can’t tell you how many times I have seen these cases, ‘How did this happen?’ ‘Well, I met somebody on social media’.”
Herrera met the unnamed victim in 2015. They hung out together with friends and communicated via Facebook after the girl’s mother attempted to put a stop to the relationship. The girl invited Herrera over to her house to watch a movie in March of that year. He started to fondle her, she told him to stop, and then he raped her without a condom.
In court, Herrera claimed to have had sex with 34 people, and, according to The Guardian felt he could “use young children for sexual gratification.” Herrera’s abidance to his abstinence sentence will be tested by polygraph, and he has been threatened with a full 15 year stay in prison if he breaks those terms.