In 2015, judge Aaron Persky made national headlines by sentencing Brock Turner, a former Stanford student found guilty of three charges of felony sexual assault, to a mere six months in prison (of which he served only three).
In 2018, Persky was recalled from his bench as a result of this decision but was recently hired to work as a high school tennis coach at California’s Lynbrook High.
How did he get hired?
— Megan Lynn (@Just_Nag_Em) September 12, 2019
At the time, Rachel Zlotziver, a spokesperson for the school district, explained the decision.
“He was a highly qualified applicant for the position, having attended several tennis coaching clinics for youth, and holds a high rating from the United States Tennis Association.”
???? Was the school out of its mind to even hire *him* to coach *girls* after *that* judgment?????????
— Reshma Nayyar (@ReshmaNayyar) September 12, 2019
The decision to hire Persky was announced late on Monday, September 9, and faced immediate public outcry.
A petition to remove him from this new role was created and quickly collected over 3,000 signatures.
— USA must ratify UNCRC & ERA! ????????❤️???????? (@UncrcU) September 11, 2019
By Wednesday, September 11, the high school was forced to rethink its new hire. Zlotziver issued another statement, saying:
“Effective September 11, 2019, Mr. Persky’s employment with the District as the Junior Varsity Girls Tennis coach has ended.”
— JennaBruce ???????????? (@botfish) September 11, 2019
She also noted:
“Please know that we are deeply committed to maintaining an effective, safe, and positive environment for all students.”
Good. People who think rape is a-okay shouldn’t be shaping young minds.
— hella tidy (@sarahgayle695) September 11, 2019
— pretty wonderful (@prettywonderfu4) September 11, 2019
In the 2015 trial, Persky sentenced rapist Brock Turner to only six months in prison despite a potential sentence of 14 years after he sexually assaulted Chanel Miller while she was unconscious. Two men interrupted the assault and chased Turner away from his victim.
In his now-infamous ruling, Persky said:
“A prison sentence would have a severe impact on him. I think he will not be a danger to others.”
— Judith Cimino (@judith_cimino) September 12, 2019
Persky also noted the influence of alcohol and other “mitigating factors” in his decision to give Turner such a lenient sentence.
He may be qualified to couch tennis, but not for the teenage girls team. Maybe some penitentiary is looking for a tennis coach – he can apply there.
— Missing Marbles (@MissingMarbles4) September 11, 2019
Now, it seems Persky will have to continue his search for a job elsewhere.
Good. Suffer forever, tbh. https://t.co/SL2Vsze9wQ
— Iron Spike (@Iron_Spike) September 12, 2019
Chanel Miller—who was only identified with a pseudonym during the trial—broke her silence in 2019. Her memoir, Know My Name: A Memoir, of how Turner’s choice to rape her affected her life—something Persky seemed oblivious to—is available for preorder here.
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