Repeat Rapist Sentenced to 60 Days in Jail

After Mark Hulett pled guilty to repeatedly raping a girl for four years, starting when she was 7 years old (6 by another report), the judge tasked with his sentencing handed down only a 60-day sentence, to be followed by compulsory sex treatment, saying he no longer believes that punishment works.

"The one message I want to get through is that anger doesn't solve anything. It just corrodes your soul," said Judge Edward Cashman speaking to a packed Burlington [Vermont] courtroom…

Judge Cashman also also revealed that he once handed down stiff sentences when he first got on the bench 25 years ago, but he no longer believes in punishment.

"I discovered it accomplishes nothing of value; it doesn't make anything better; it costs us a lot of money; we create a lot of expectation, and we feed on anger," Cashman explained to the people in the court.
Needless to say, the family of the victim were outraged, as were the prosecutors, who were seeking a a sentence of eight to twenty years in prison, not a two-month stint in the local clink.

I’m pretty outraged, too. I think the judge is dead wrong; sex offenders have a high recidivism rate, even with rehabilitation. If he were seeking treatment on behalf of a substance abuser, it would be a totally different story, but sending a child rapist for finite treatment and then letting him go is tantamount to tacitly endorsing his further abuse of children. That said, my outrage isn’t directed predominantly at the judge.

Judge Cashman explained that he is more concerned that Hulett receive sex offender treatment as rehabilitation. But under Department of Corrections classification, Hulett is considered a low-risk for re-offense so he does not qualify for in-prison treatment. So the judge sentenced him to just 60 days in prison and then Hulett must complete sex treatment when he gets out or face a possible life sentence.
In other words, the Department of Corrections tied the hands of any judge who would have wanted to include rehabilitation as part of Hulett’s sentencing. And while I find it highly objectionable that a judge would endorse treatment over prison time for a child rapist, I find it more objectionable that the Department of Corrections made it an either-or scenario in the first place. What the hell kind of bullshit classifications system do they have, that someone who’s spent three years repeatedly raping a child is considered “low-risk” for re-offending? That’s completely absurd, and indicative of such a grave misunderstanding of sex offenders that it defies comprehension.

If rehabilitation is going to be made available for sex offenders, I can’t imagine why this piece of shit doesn’t qualify. It certainly raises some serious questions about how victims of sex abuse are valued, or, perhaps more accurately, not valued.

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