I know laws are written for a reason, but for the life of me I can not understand how anyone can be sentenced to life in prison when found guilty of lewdness, especially since that same sentence is given to someone who has been found guilty of second degree murder.

michelle-taylor.jpgMichelle Taylor, 32, from Carson City, Nevada, was accused of getting a 13 year old boy to touch her breasts. Although she did tell the boy that she wanted him to have sex with her, there was clearly nothing else going on between them. Reports are that there was no clothing removed on either one of them, no genitals were touched and there was no penetration whatsoever.

While I say, she was wrong to place herself in that position with the boy, she certainly didn’t rape the boy, nor did she actually have sex with him. I was curious about this so I asked my husband when he was 13, had a woman approached him asking him to touch her breasts, would he have thought twice about it? His answer was of no shock to me, he said he would have jumped at it!

Elko County Deputy D.A. Chad Thompson said, “While there was negotiations in this particular case, because of the stance of the defendant she didn’t want to plead to anything that would require her to register as a sex offender.”

Taylor took her chances in court and lost. She was found guilty of lewdness with a minor and was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after ten years.

Her attorney’s Alina Kilpatrick and her co-council Donald Bergensen brought this in front of the Supreme Court and argued that the sentence didn’t fit the crime. The courts questioned if this were an adult man and a teenage girl would they still be standing there arguing the same point. The court also asked if they ruled for the defendant in this case, would they be flooded with requests from other cases such as robbery and grand larceny convicts who didn’t steal as much as the other guy did.

Bergensen responded by saying, “Well the sentence for grand larceny and burglary, and robbery are not this high and they are not as disproportionate. They are much more meaningfully arranged to go and fit the crime. It’s not a catch all statute.”

He says he is asking the courts to issue his client a license to run a child’s day care, he just finds this sentencing shockingly severe.

The Supreme Court could make their decision in a few weeks or perhaps a few months.

As for my opinion here, I think it is sad that known criminals are sentenced far less than this woman has been. Like I said, she was wrong for doing what she did but I have to agree that her sentence was a bit harsh. I don’t know what the circumstances were as to why she didn’t actually have sex with the boy, it has not been told, as far as I can see. I do think that should have been under consideration in this case though. Perhaps there is more to this case than what we are being told so I am not going to pass my final judgment until I know for sure. It just seems so unfair, especially when there are so many other sex offenders walking the streets to this day.

Jan Barrett

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