Prep School Grad Gets 1 Year Sentence in Sex Assault Case

30 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

High-Profile St. Paul’s Rape Trial Ends in One-Year Jail Sentence for Owen Labrie.

A graduate of an exclusive New England prep school was sentenced Thursday to a year in jail for sexually assaulting a 15-year-old freshman girl as part of a competition among upperclassmen to rack up sexual conquests. Owen Labrie, 20, of Tunbridge, Vermont, was also ordered to register as a sex offender, perhaps for the rest of his life, and serve five years of probation after he gets out of jail.

Merrimack County Superior Court Judge Larry Smukler also ordered the 20-year-old to undergo psychosexual evaluation and to be on probation for five years after his release. Paul’s School in New Hampshire. “A jury in August cleared him of rape and convicted him instead of misdemeanor sexual assault for having intercourse and other sexual contact with an underage girl,” the Associated Press reports. “He was also found guilty of a felony count of using a computer—specifically, Facebook and email—to lure the girl.” Labrie was 18 years old and the girl 15, at the time.

In a videotaped statement played in court Thursday, the girl, now 17, said she was subjected to verbal and physical retaliation from other students after her return to St. Labrie’s invitation to join him for a “senior salute,” a practice at the school in which younger students met with seniors for a romantic encounter just before graduation. The girl, who Reuters is not identifying, did not appear in court but gave a half-hour statement by video, saying she continued to struggle with the traumatic memory of the assault. “I don’t really know how to put one foot in front of another. Prosecutors had argued that the victim accepted Labrie’s invitation for a “senior salute” in the final weeks of school but never intended to have sex with him.

Labrie, who was the only defense witness, testified that the encounter amounted to kissing and embracing in their underwear, and that it stopped well short of sex. Paul’s, she stood up to the rape culture that exists in our society that allows boys to be boys and somehow says it is OK for men to do irreparable harm to girls,” he said, as Labrie sat staring straight ahead. The prosecution had been seeking a stiffer sentence—up to 7 years—for the one-time soccer captain who had been accepted to Harvard where he had planned to study theology.

The defense argued for community service, saying the penalty paid had already been sufficient for what the defense called a “consensual encounter between two teenagers.” The defense team also filed a motion to dismiss the felony conviction because it was intended to punish much older sexual predators preying on young children. But they were misdemeanors, rather than felonies, because of New Hampshire’s Romeo and Juliet exemption, which gives lesser penalties when there are age differences of four years or less. A federal appeals court in New York rejected an effort by civil liberties groups to end the National Security Agency’s phone records surveillance program before it is overhauled next month. At issue is the NSA’s collection of millions of Americans’ phone records—not the content of the conversations, but their duration, time and the numbers called. The NSA’s aim is to find links between terror suspects, but privacy advocates argue the program unconstitutionally violates Americans’ privacy rights.

In June, Congress passed a law that will end collection of the data, instead allowing the NSA to search the phone companies’ records only if it gets court approval. An Illinois man arrested last year as he and two teenage siblings were preparing to board a plane for Turkey at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to attempting to travel to Syria to join Islamic State. Mohammed Hamzah Khan, 20, pleaded guilty to one count of attempting to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization and faces up to 15 years in prison, according to prosecutors. Khan’s attorney said prosecutors likely will recommend a five-year sentence. “This is a deal that a young man couldn’t pass up,” said Thomas Durkin, Mr. He had worked all summer to raise the money for the flight and following his arrest, federal agents detained his younger siblings—aged 16 and 17—and searched the family’s home in nearby Bolingbrook, Ill.

Khan “intended to work under the direction and control of ISIL, and be required to take any assignment ISIL gave him,” according to a statement from Zachary Fardon, U.S.

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