Stacey Dean Rambold, the Montana teacher who served 30 days in jail for raping a student who later killed herself, claims that he is in fact the victim because of the public’s “lynch mob” mentality.
Following the rapes, in 2010, 14-year-old Cherice Moralez fatally shot herself in her mother’s bed. Rambold repeatedly raped Moralez, with authorities saying there were at least three sexual encounters between the two.
“The citizens of Montana have determined that persons as young as 12 years of age will be held accountable and responsible for their actions in regard to certain types of sexual offenses,” said Rambold’s attorney Jay Lansing. “There is no rational basis to conclude that if the person is 14 years of age, the person can only have responsibility if they are the offender.”
Shockingly, during the trial, Judge G. Todd Baugh said that the rapes were partially the victim’s fault because she “appeared older than her chronological age and was probably as much in control of the situation as the defendant.”
A panel that was assigned to investigate the comments by Judge Baugh received hundreds of complaints asking that the Montana Supreme Court censor the judge. A few weeks ago, Judge Baugh waived his rights to a public hearing and turned himself over to the justices to face consequences. He now has apologized for his comments and lax sentencing, and he plans to retire at the end of the year.