AFRICANGLOBE – Convicted rapist Brock Turner jumped from the frying pan into the fire this week when he returned to his family’s home in Bellbrook, Ohio, after serving half of his prison term for “good behavior.” Turner was greeted by a group of so-called activists armed with assault rifles, who had gathered in protest of the former Stanford student’s light sentence.
Turner, who was convicted of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman outside a frat party in January, finished up his short stint in a California jail last Friday. Although the former university athlete had been found guilty of multiple felonies by a jury, he was sentenced to six months by Judge Aaron Persky. The lenient ruling sparked a national outcry and brought attention to the case.
Quoted by the Guardian, several protesters camped on Turner’s lawn and vowed to continue their stand in order to make Turner feel “uncomfortable in his own home.”
“He should not be able to go to jail for three months … and then just live his life normally,” said 22-year-old Jaimes Campbell, an AR-15 rifle-wielding protester who helped organize the gathering and is part of a broader anarchist activist group in Ohio. “We want to let him know that people aren’t just going to forget about what he did.”
Campbell’s primary aim for protesting was to send a message to Turner. For others, such as fellow organizer, Micah Naziri, 39, the motive was more political. “The number one reason why we had this armed protest was to make a militant feminist statement in favor of self-defense of would-be rape victims,” said Naziri, who was equipped with a .300 Blackout rifle.
Daniel and Molly Hardin, a couple in possession of an M4 assault rifle and shotgun, had their own message for Turner. “If you try this again, we will shoot you,” Daniel Hardin told the Guardian, with Molly Hardin adding that, “it’s completely legal to kill a rapist in the act of rape.”
Not all of Turner’s critics are so militant, let alone armed. Michele Landis Dauber, a Stanford law professor leading a campaign to recall Judge Persky, spoke out against the extreme action. “We strongly condemn the armed protesters,” said Dauber. “We do not support vigilante action of any kind.”
Campbell, however, sees his use of a weapon as less of a threat than a provocation. “I look at my AR-15 as a protest sign,” said Campbell, who added, “it puts a little more focus on the severity of the crime.”
The Guardian received no comment from Turner’s lawyer on his client’s release or the armed protests.
By: Robin Scher
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