Comments

  1. The punishment is too harsh, but I will say this – I have a daughter who is 13. I’m not at all sure how forgiving I’d be of a 17 or 18 year old boy that took advantage of her.

  2. The punishment is too harsh, but I will say this – I have a daughter who is 13. I’m not at all sure how forgiving I’d be of a 17 or 18 year old boy that took advantage of her.

  3. James: look into this case. Real sex offenders often only get 90 days in jail. And from what I can tell of this case, this was consentual sex. Not “taking advantage of.”

    If he had had straight sex with her, he would have gotten a few months, but because he got a blow job, he’s getting 10 years. Amazing how stupid our laws are.

    Also, he was 17. She was 15. Hardly a major difference.

  4. James: look into this case. Real sex offenders often only get 90 days in jail. And from what I can tell of this case, this was consentual sex. Not “taking advantage of.”

    If he had had straight sex with her, he would have gotten a few months, but because he got a blow job, he’s getting 10 years. Amazing how stupid our laws are.

    Also, he was 17. She was 15. Hardly a major difference.

  5. Note that they fixed the law now. That’s what makes this even worse.

    Wilson is in jail when other kids in GA today would not receive near as harsh a punishment. Looks like the governor needs to step in and pardon at some point, assuming she or he has the spine.

  6. Note that they fixed the law now. That’s what makes this even worse.

    Wilson is in jail when other kids in GA today would not receive near as harsh a punishment. Looks like the governor needs to step in and pardon at some point, assuming she or he has the spine.

  7. Okay, it’s a stupid law. We have lots of stupid laws here in the UK too. For example, you can get married at 16, have a job and have a child, but you couldn’t have a drink at your wedding and you can’t vote for the government to whom you pay your taxes and who is responsible for providing any medical treatment your child may need!

    However, the fact the law is stupid isn’t the point. The point is, what the guy did was illegal at the time he did it. Just because the law has now changed, doesn’t mean you can apply that law retrospectively and let the guy out.

    Why not? Because applying laws retrospectively is a dangerous thing to do. Okay, so it appears to make sense in this situation. However, it’s a double edged sword; who wants to be thrown in jail today for something that was legal when we did it yesterday? A retrospective look at the law cuts both ways. Don’t go there.

  8. Okay, it’s a stupid law. We have lots of stupid laws here in the UK too. For example, you can get married at 16, have a job and have a child, but you couldn’t have a drink at your wedding and you can’t vote for the government to whom you pay your taxes and who is responsible for providing any medical treatment your child may need!

    However, the fact the law is stupid isn’t the point. The point is, what the guy did was illegal at the time he did it. Just because the law has now changed, doesn’t mean you can apply that law retrospectively and let the guy out.

    Why not? Because applying laws retrospectively is a dangerous thing to do. Okay, so it appears to make sense in this situation. However, it’s a double edged sword; who wants to be thrown in jail today for something that was legal when we did it yesterday? A retrospective look at the law cuts both ways. Don’t go there.

  9. Gary: I am not so sure you would be singing the same tune if it was your own son in prison for the next 10 years. Think about it.

  10. Gary: I am not so sure you would be singing the same tune if it was your own son in prison for the next 10 years. Think about it.

  11. There’s been a couple of “punishment-doesn’t-fit-the-crime-and-by-the-way-is-it-even-a-crime” type of cases in the last couple of weeks. Obviously there is Wilson’s case, but let’s not forget poor Julie Amero who might go to jail for 40 years because the computer she was using was infected with spyware. I was kinda hoping that one of your old MS buddies would volunteer to help Ms. Amero.

  12. There’s been a couple of “punishment-doesn’t-fit-the-crime-and-by-the-way-is-it-even-a-crime” type of cases in the last couple of weeks. Obviously there is Wilson’s case, but let’s not forget poor Julie Amero who might go to jail for 40 years because the computer she was using was infected with spyware. I was kinda hoping that one of your old MS buddies would volunteer to help Ms. Amero.

  13. Dan: Did you take a drink before you were 25? You did? Oh, I’m sorry, we just made that illegal, so now you have to go to jail for 5 years. Think about it.

  14. Dan: Did you take a drink before you were 25? You did? Oh, I’m sorry, we just made that illegal, so now you have to go to jail for 5 years. Think about it.

  15. That’s right Herb, and you can’t change a law and then let a guy out of jail ‘cos what he did then isn’t illegal now.

    The thing is, I agree he shouldn’t be in there in the first place (I’m playing devil’s advocate), I just feel something like that would set a dangerous precedent don’t you think?

  16. That’s right Herb, and you can’t change a law and then let a guy out of jail ‘cos what he did then isn’t illegal now.

    The thing is, I agree he shouldn’t be in there in the first place (I’m playing devil’s advocate), I just feel something like that would set a dangerous precedent don’t you think?

  17. “you can’t change a law and then let a guy out of jail ‘cos what he did then isn’t illegal now.”

    True, which is why although GA has changed the law in question, Wilson is still in jail. However, you *can* write laws that will let people out of jail who have been properly convicted under other laws. I’ve seen it happen in the past, although of course I can’t think of an example at the moment.

    And no, I don’t think changing laws to release people from jail would set a dangerous precedent, certainly no more dangerous than gubernatorial or presidential pardons. Changing the laws to send people to jail based on past crimes would of course be a dangerous precedent, but luckily for U.S. citizens, that’s not legal under the U.S. Constitution.

  18. “you can’t change a law and then let a guy out of jail ‘cos what he did then isn’t illegal now.”

    True, which is why although GA has changed the law in question, Wilson is still in jail. However, you *can* write laws that will let people out of jail who have been properly convicted under other laws. I’ve seen it happen in the past, although of course I can’t think of an example at the moment.

    And no, I don’t think changing laws to release people from jail would set a dangerous precedent, certainly no more dangerous than gubernatorial or presidential pardons. Changing the laws to send people to jail based on past crimes would of course be a dangerous precedent, but luckily for U.S. citizens, that’s not legal under the U.S. Constitution.

  19. A dangerous precedent? You are joking right?
    I understand that the law was stupid.
    They realized the law was stupid.
    They fixed the law.
    Why not fix the other crime,— the fact that someone was convicted, (I assume by a jury, who had to follow the law), and convicted with a broken law.
    Here in Australia they often make retrospective changes to laws to protect innocent people. But I believe (Hearsay alert) that there are statutes forbidding retrospective Convictions in most cases. Surely the governor or someone could at least pardon them in the worst case.
    Lastly, Precedent is the basis of your system, why not set a moral one for a change, instead of suing someones grandmother…or better still paying the CRIMINAL for being hurt in the act of an offense…

  20. A dangerous precedent? You are joking right?
    I understand that the law was stupid.
    They realized the law was stupid.
    They fixed the law.
    Why not fix the other crime,— the fact that someone was convicted, (I assume by a jury, who had to follow the law), and convicted with a broken law.
    Here in Australia they often make retrospective changes to laws to protect innocent people. But I believe (Hearsay alert) that there are statutes forbidding retrospective Convictions in most cases. Surely the governor or someone could at least pardon them in the worst case.
    Lastly, Precedent is the basis of your system, why not set a moral one for a change, instead of suing someones grandmother…or better still paying the CRIMINAL for being hurt in the act of an offense…

  21. Since he was properly convicted of committing the crime at the time when it was a crime, there is nothing the justice system can do.

    He can, however, be pardoned by the Governor of the State of Georgia and that is where people should apply pressure.

  22. Since he was properly convicted of committing the crime at the time when it was a crime, there is nothing the justice system can do.

    He can, however, be pardoned by the Governor of the State of Georgia and that is where people should apply pressure.

  23. This certainly was a stupid law. Glad they fixed it. Kinda sad they didn’t make it retroactive.

    That said, I have a bone to pick….

    “For those who don’t know. Genarlow Wilson was sentenced to 10 years in jail for doing something every 17 year old I knew, including me, tried to do.”

    That was from Mark Cuban’s post.

    If every 17 year old he knew had sex (both straight and orally) in a hotel room with a 17 year old and then a 15 year old female – AND VIDEOTAPED THE GANG BANG – well, I guess I really am out of touch with things.

    I’d rate making a tape of the thing to be at least as stupid as a now-obsolete law in Georgia.

  24. This certainly was a stupid law. Glad they fixed it. Kinda sad they didn’t make it retroactive.

    That said, I have a bone to pick….

    “For those who don’t know. Genarlow Wilson was sentenced to 10 years in jail for doing something every 17 year old I knew, including me, tried to do.”

    That was from Mark Cuban’s post.

    If every 17 year old he knew had sex (both straight and orally) in a hotel room with a 17 year old and then a 15 year old female – AND VIDEOTAPED THE GANG BANG – well, I guess I really am out of touch with things.

    I’d rate making a tape of the thing to be at least as stupid as a now-obsolete law in Georgia.

  25. If he were a white boy, or from one of the black families that were heavily involved in the civil rights movement, the governor would have already pardoned him – IF he’d been prosecuted at all, which is unlikely. As it is, unless his case becomes a major political issue during an election year here in Georgia, the poor kid will stay right there in that jail cell. And even after he’s released, he’ll be marked for life as a sex offender, for consensual activity with a peer.

    Georgia isn’t the only state with such backwards laws. It’s a good thing he didn’t get a blow job from a 15-year-old boy. If that were the case, he wouldn’t be getting the sympathetic press that he is getting now.

  26. If he were a white boy, or from one of the black families that were heavily involved in the civil rights movement, the governor would have already pardoned him – IF he’d been prosecuted at all, which is unlikely. As it is, unless his case becomes a major political issue during an election year here in Georgia, the poor kid will stay right there in that jail cell. And even after he’s released, he’ll be marked for life as a sex offender, for consensual activity with a peer.

    Georgia isn’t the only state with such backwards laws. It’s a good thing he didn’t get a blow job from a 15-year-old boy. If that were the case, he wouldn’t be getting the sympathetic press that he is getting now.

  27. I wrote about this last week — and am about to do a followup as readers have advised me about two similarly “inappropriately sentenced” teens in Florida.

    Adding insult to injury – at the same time he was put in prison for 10 years, right down the hall, a late 20s married-with-kids female teacher got 90 days in jail for conducting an ongoing sexual relationship with a 16 year old male student.

    To James (1) – Read the story. It was consensual oral sex and the girl (two years his younger) initiated it. No one is denying this – the girl, the prosecutor, etc. So there was no “taking advantage.”

    To Kevin (3) and Herschel (14) and Cynthia (16) -
    READ the case, guys and gals. ARGHHHH.

    The Governor does **not** have the power to pardon in this case.

    The law under which he was charged and convicted is aggravated child molestation and the legislature included in the bill text something along the lines of “no pardon or parole.”

    However, the prosecutor did have the power to charge him as first offender or to not charge him at all (no victim = no crime) — but he, a white man in a predominantly white county, _did_ choose to charge this young black man.. probably because he had the efforntry to insist on his innocence.

    To Gary (5) – What teenage knows that oral sex with a peer is a felony, but sexual intercourse _isn’t_? Get real.

    Kathy

  28. I wrote about this last week — and am about to do a followup as readers have advised me about two similarly “inappropriately sentenced” teens in Florida.

    Adding insult to injury – at the same time he was put in prison for 10 years, right down the hall, a late 20s married-with-kids female teacher got 90 days in jail for conducting an ongoing sexual relationship with a 16 year old male student.

    To James (1) – Read the story. It was consensual oral sex and the girl (two years his younger) initiated it. No one is denying this – the girl, the prosecutor, etc. So there was no “taking advantage.”

    To Kevin (3) and Herschel (14) and Cynthia (16) -
    READ the case, guys and gals. ARGHHHH.

    The Governor does **not** have the power to pardon in this case.

    The law under which he was charged and convicted is aggravated child molestation and the legislature included in the bill text something along the lines of “no pardon or parole.”

    However, the prosecutor did have the power to charge him as first offender or to not charge him at all (no victim = no crime) — but he, a white man in a predominantly white county, _did_ choose to charge this young black man.. probably because he had the efforntry to insist on his innocence.

    To Gary (5) – What teenage knows that oral sex with a peer is a felony, but sexual intercourse _isn’t_? Get real.

    Kathy

  29. Kathy – You’re right, ESPN picked up the story as well, and that’s what they said: he was prosecuted simply because he didn’t want to plead guilty and have that on his record.

    Link to story

  30. Kathy – You’re right, ESPN picked up the story as well, and that’s what they said: he was prosecuted simply because he didn’t want to plead guilty and have that on his record.

    Link to story