Probation for Raping a 3-Year-Old?

ROBERT H. RICHARDS

A mind-boggling report in a Delaware newspaper recently revealed that Robert H. Richards IV, heir to the DuPont chemical fortune, pleaded guilty in 2009 to raping his then-3-year-old daughter, but got off without a lick of jail time. Instead, Judge Jan Jurden sentenced him to eight years probation. Richards’ crime—fourth-degree rape—is a felony that carries a […]

Call to Disrobe Victim-Blaming Montana Judge

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Last Thursday, September 26, Mr. Stacy Rambold was released from Montana State Prison in Deer Lodge after serving a 30-day sentence. That  may sound like just punishment for shoplifting or vandalism—but for rape? Rambold, a former schoolteacher, was convicted of the 2007 statutory rape of 14-year-old student Cherice Moralez. Just before her 17th birthday, Moralez—who […]

Marissa Alexander Gets New Trial

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A Florida woman currently serving 20 years in prison for firing a shot in the vicinity of her abusive husband will get a new trial–but she can’t claim protection under the state’s infamous “stand your ground” law, an appeals court ruled Thursday. No one was hurt in the incident, but mandatory sentencing laws required Marissa […]

Women Inmates Were Sterilized in California Prisons

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According to a recent article by The Center for Investigative Reporting, doctors at two California women’s prisons—the California Institute for Women in Corona and the Valley State Prison for Women in Chowchilla (now a men’s prison)—unlawfully sterilized at least 148 women inmates between 2006 and 2010. For those of you wondering if we were actually […]

What’s the Connection Between Violence Against Women and Our Prison Nation?

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As CeCe McDonald lingers in jail for being a Black transwoman who defended herself in a public space, and Kelley Williams-Bolar is convicted of a felony for sending her children to a higher-ranked Ohio school district in which she did not reside, it’s time to read Beth E. Richie’s  Arrested Justice: Black Women, Violence and […]

17-Year-Old Imprisoned for Failing To Testify Against Her Alleged Rapist

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Update 4/17/12: After more than three weeks in juvenile detention, the victim has been released with a GPS ankle bracelet. She is scheduled to appear in court on April 23. In Sacramento, a county judge has taken “victim-blaming” to a whole new level, ordering that a rape victim be jailed while awaiting the trial of […]

The Awful Truth About Women’s Lives in Prison

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Inside This Place, Not of It: Narratives from Women’s Prison provides a chilling glimpse of the human rights abuses suffered by women in U.S. prisons.  The book is essentially a set of edited interview transcripts, with each chapter providing a first-person account of a different currently or formerly incarcerated woman. What these narrators reveal about their […]

Troy Davis Is Gone, But the Struggle Goes On

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Like many, I was glued to Democracy Now’s live broadcast on the night of Wednesday, Sept. 21, from 6 p.m. until shortly after 11:08 p.m., the time that Troy Davis was killed by the state of Georgia, where I reside. Suddenly, the students’ essays that I was supposed to be grading or the dinner I […]

Trans Woman Sent to Men’s Prison After Alleging Rape by Guard

Trans Woman Sent to Men's Prison

TRIGGER WARNING: Material about sexual assault. Recently, a woman was allegedly orally raped by a prison guard at Riverside Correctional Facility in Philadelphia. She reported the assault to authorities and an investigation was opened. During that investigation, officials learned that she was not a cisgender woman, as they had apparently been assuming, and promptly transferred […]

DNA Evidence CAN Stop Serial Rapists

DNA Evidence Can Stop Rape

It was an ordinary day in October, 2002. Julie Weil and her infant son were picking up Julie’s daughter, three-year-old Emily, from her Florida preschool at  noon. As Julie buckled her daughter into her car seat, she felt a sudden blow to the head. That day, Julie was raped four times in front of her […]