Letter from Brock Turner’s mother – Prison ‘would be a death sentence for him’
STANFORD, CA (KTVI) – In a letter to the judge responsible for sentencing her son, the mother of convicted rapist Brock Turner pleaded for mercy on her son’s behalf, writing he would not survive in prison and that he’d been “traumatized” by the guilty verdict.
Less than a week after a letter from Brock Turner’s father drew widespread scorn for referring to the January 2015 rape of an unconscious woman as “20 minutes of action,” Carleen Turner’s own letter to the judge became a target of indignation and contempt.
In the four-page letter, Carleen Turner described Brock’s upbringing: participation in Cub Scouts, joining a swim team at age 4, taking honors classes in high school, even anecdotes of him asking his girlfriend to homecoming and prom. She goes on to write that she and her husband’s lives are divided into two phases — before and after the weekend of January 17, 2015.
“My first thought upon wakening every morning is “this isn’t real, this can’t be real. Why him? Why HIM? WHY? WHY?” I have cried every single day since Jan. 18. This is on my mind every moment. But in the months leading up to the trial, we had hope. Brock told us what happened and his accounting of the events of that night never changed from the first time he told us everything. He was a shy and awkward 19-year old, far away from home trying to fit in with the swimmers he idolized. He is the most trust-worthy and honest person I know. He was telling the truth. We knew once he had to opportunity to tell what happened this would all go away.”
Brock Turner was convicted in March on charges of assault with the intent to commit rape of an unconscious person, sexual penetration of an unconscious person, and sexual penetration of an intoxicated person. He faced up to 14 years in prison, but prosecutors recommended a six-year sentence. However, Santa Clara County Judge Aaron Persky sentenced Turner in early June to just six months in county jail, which could be reduced to three months for good behavior.
An online petition has since circulated demanding that Judge Persky be removed from the bench.
Carleen Turner, who does not mention the victim in her letter, goes to describe her son’s well-being in the aftermath of the guilty verdict:
“Brock is a shattered and broken shell of the person he used to be. My once vibrant and happy boy is distraught, deeply depressed, terribly wounded, and filled with despair. His smile is gone forever-that beautiful grin is no more. When I look into his eyes I see fear and anguish. His voice is barely above a whisper and he keeps himself hunched over almost trying not to be noticed. He trembles uncontrollably. He is crushed that the jury ruled against him. He has lost so much weight because he barely eats anything. He is utterly terrified and traumatized by this.”