Brock Turner was released from jail on Friday, September 2, after serving less than six months behind bars for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman behind a dumpster.
Back in June, the former Stanford University swimmer, now 21, made national news for the incident, which took place in January 2015. He was found guilty in March, and prosecutors asked for him to be given six years in prison. Instead, Judge Aaron Persky sentenced him to just six months in jail, and it was later revealed that he would be getting out three months early.
Persky received backlash for the light punishment, and a petition was launched to get him recalled from the bench. In June, he was removed from another sexual assault case and, at one point, jurors refused to serve while he presided over the courtroom.
Turner’s father, Dan Turner, was also slammed for writing to Persky that Brock no longer had an appetite for steak because of the case. Additionally, Dan wrote that a heavy sentencing would be a “steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action out of his 20 plus years of life.”
Brock went on to serve three months at the Santa Clara County jail. On Friday, he walked out wearing a blue button-down shirt and dark pants. James Jensen of the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office told ABC News that he received hundreds of letters of hate mail during his stay.
Brock will next return to his hometown in Greene County, Ohio, and will have to complete three years of probation. Within five days, he must register as a sex offender at the Greene County Sheriff’s Department.
Brock’s victim has remained anonymous amid the controversy. In June, the open letter she read in court to Brock was released, and she was later applauded by Vice President Joe Biden for her bravery.
“What has he done to demonstrate that he deserves a break? He has only apologized for drinking and has yet to define what he did to me as sexual assault, he has revictimized me continually, relentlessly,” she wrote in the letter, via BuzzFeed. “He is a lifetime sex registrant. That doesn’t expire. Just like what he did to me doesn’t expire, doesn’t just go away after a set number of years. It stays with me, it’s part of my identity, it has forever changed the way I carry myself, the way I live the rest of my life.”
If you or anyone you know has been sexually assaulted, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). A trained staff member will provide confidential, judgment-free support as well as local resources to assist in healing and recovering, and more.
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