California legislature votes to close loophole after Brock Turner sex assault case
California lawmakers voted unanimously this week to close a loophole in sexual assault law that allowed for a more lenient sentence in cases where the victim did not actively resist the assault.
Rape is rape.- California assemblyperson Bill Dodd (D-Napa)
California Assembly Member Bill Dodd co-wrote the bill to close the loophole. He spoke to As It Happens guest host Laura Lynch.
"The current law provides that a defendant's use of force triggers a mandatory prison sentence," he says."However, when a victim is unconscious or severely intoxicated and unable to resist, there isn't the same sentencing requirement."
"There shouldn't be a disparity between the two crimes. . . Rape is rape."
He also expressed concern that lenient sentencing could "discourage other survivors from coming forward and sends the message that raping incapacitated victims is no big deal."
In the meantime, Dodd says he hopes that Turner "has learned a lesson . . . and really works to try and change the culture."
"At the end of the day, the poor young woman who had to go through that ordeal is still left thinking, 'Nobody protected me.'"