The Calhoun, Georgia case of three star high school athletes who allegedly sexually assaulted a girl at a post-prom party has taken a decidedly un-Steubenville-like turn, as instead of getting slaps on the wrists, the three defendants face hundreds of years in prison. Georgia prosecutors are not fucking around.
The boys were initially indicted last month, but defense attorneys complained that the indictment was "flawed," according to the Chattanooga Times Free Press. So prosecutors went back over the case and returned with nine new charges.
The charges facing Benjamin Chapman, Andrew Isaac Haynes and Damon Avery Johnson stem from a horrifying post prom sexual assault that left a female victim with "substantial" injuries. According to police reports, the teenager was sexually assaulted by all three defendents, who used their fingers and sodomized her with a foreign object. As a result of their actions, they now face "two counts of aggravated sexual battery— one count for each finger they used." Also among the charges: public indecency and aggravated battery. Each count of aggravated sexual battery carries with it a maximum sentence of 25 years in prison. Overall, the three defendants are facing a staggering 371 years in prison, or 10 life sentences.
Steve Williams, attorney for one of the defendants, called the charges "way, way, way out of proportion" and "exaggerated." He's never seen anything like this, in all his years of law practice! This is outrageous!
That's probably because for much of the decades he's been practicing law, the legal system did not give a shit about rape victims. If anything good can come out of something this bad, it's the precedent that raping intoxicated women isn't just boys blowing off some steam after the big game or the big dance or the big whatever. It's a life-ruiningly big deal for the victims of sexual assault, and perpetrators should be punished as such.
Image via screengrab