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March 23, 2011

Victim complains about Lawrence Taylor getting probation for sex crime

As detailed in this USA Today piece, the "underage girl who Lawrence Taylor admitted having sex with before a guilty plea to a sex charge said Tuesday that the sentence of probation given to the Pro Football Hall of Famer was too lenient."  Here is more:

The girl -- whom USA TODAY will not identify -- told reporters after Taylor was sentenced to six years probation in a New York court that she wanted to see him got to jail. "I am not a prostitute," she said. "I am a victim and I am hurting. I don't think the sentence given to Mr. Taylor is fair."

The girl was a runaway who was sent into a hotel room with Taylor in May 2010. Prosecutors have charged Rasheed Davis with being the pimp that sent the girl into Taylor's hotel room. The Hall of Famer admitted paying $300 for sex.

This AP piece provide more details about the sentencing and details that Taylor's probation term in six years and that he must register as a sex offender.

March 23, 2011 at 02:22 AM | Permalink

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Comments

"$300 for sex."

Good bench mark from the market for the value of this service. Any restitution should be limited to that amount.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Mar 23, 2011 5:34:04 AM

I have a relative who, when he was in his 20s, had a consensual relationship with a 16 year old (facts undisputed by the prosecution and the 16 year old). He served time for statutory rape, and then was forced to register.

The ex-NFL football player gets probation for purchasing an underage girl for sex, where there is likely no consent--or at least certainly less than in my relative's case.

What exhibit number am I on now for double standards?

Posted by: Res ipsa | Mar 23, 2011 9:08:55 AM

Res ipsa --

Double standards, and triple and quadruple standards -- indeed idiosyncratic standards willy nilly -- are a sure thing unless we bring back mandatory guidelines.

Such guidelines are not the full answer either, since they will (and should) allow some degree of discretion, but they will help curb arbitrariness and helter-skelter outcomes.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Mar 23, 2011 9:16:52 AM

Bill, I'm not so sure how mandatory vs. advisory guidelines would have helped here. Taylor, according to the article, plead guilty to a misdemeanor. If Res ipsa's relative plead to a felony, then figuratively speaking (I hope that’s okay this time), it's apples and oranges.

This sounds more like a case of prosecutorial discretion causing the disparity (if any in fact exists). Are you so quick to favor reigning in that, as you are with judicial discretion? Or is Booker somehow responsible for Taylor being offered a misdemeanor plea?

Posted by: DEJ | Mar 23, 2011 10:31:17 AM

Regardless of what one thinks about the sentence imposed, this "victim" is simply posturing for a civil case payday.

She was a runaway working for a ruthless pimp, accepted money for sex, and now claims to have been "violated."

Posted by: mjs | Mar 23, 2011 10:36:33 AM

Bill, you continually raise the idea of the guidelines being the solution to unwarranted disparity when the real disparity (or, at least, a huge part of it) is at the prosecutorial level. Indeed, the other day you commented on a story and made this same point, where the story (like this one) dealt with disparity because of prosecutorial choices. Do you agree granting prosecutors unbridled discretion (while perhaps necessary) is a huge factor in disparity? Is that discretion more or less of a problem when it comes to disparity?

Posted by: anon | Mar 23, 2011 10:44:32 AM

DEJ --

"I'm not so sure how mandatory vs. advisory guidelines would have helped here."

I agree, I think, that they would not have helped HERE, but I didn't say they would help here. I said they would help tamp down the problem of idiosyncratic sentencing, and they will.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Mar 23, 2011 10:54:54 AM

anon and DEJ --

As long as the criminal justice system is constructed and run by human beings, discrection is going to be part of it. The question is not whether discretion can be eliminated in either the executive or judicial branches; the question is how it can be intelligtently constrained so as to reduce unwarranted disparity in the treatment of criminals.

There is no perfect answer to that either, nor is perfection a realistic goal. Improvement is, however.

Let's assume for the moment that prosecutorial discretion is a part of the disparity problem (an assumption I address momentarily). That does not mean unbrideled judicial discretion is not ALSO part of the problem, or that such discretion should not be reined in. It should be, and mandatory guidelines do a better job of it than advisory guidelines.

At one point we had mandatory federal guidelines and we can have them again, if Congress acts. I hope it will, and will be working toward that end.

The pre-Booker mandatory guidelines, I should note, provided the courts with more leeway than they are generally credited with doing, in a variety of important ways I have previously detailed (reasonably broad ranges, role in the offense adjustments, acceptance or responsibility, etc.). This is in large part because the Congress that passed the SRA of 1984 recognized that some degree of discretion is advisable, as well as unavoidable.

The same is true of prosecutorial discretion, but there are different wrinkles in cabining that sort of discretion. The Constitution itself gives the executive branch exclusive charging (and pardoning) power. Unlike the setting of the general parameters of sentences (MM's for example), in which Congress has an obvious and historically validated role, the exercise of charging discretion is not, under the Constitution, on Congress's plate.

What this means is that the regulation of charging discretion will have to occur at both a micro and a macro level in a way different from a legislatively-imposed approach. At the mico level, it will have to be by internal review committees, both in the USAO's and Main Justice. When I was in the USAO for EDVA, we had such committees, as well as up-the-line supervision by supervisory AUSA's.

The macro level for regulating charging decisions, and other prosecutorial decisions such as which areas to emphasize (drugs, guns, porn, fraud, etc.) is this: elections. And of course this has come to pass, as there are different priorities in the current administration from what there were in its predecessor.

Elections are not a perfect answer either, of course, because they are a blunt instrument, and because, all depending on what's going on with the country, criminal law generally, much less charging decisions, are seldom voting issues. The only time I can recall when crime was a front burner issue in a Presidential election was 1972, when the crime rate had started to skyrocket to the point that Nixon was elected even though he was widely and correctly thought to be a sleaze.

So there is no perfect answer to either judicial or prosecutorial idiosyncrasy, but there are things we can do.

Posted by: Bill Otis | Mar 23, 2011 11:31:18 AM

got to love the stupidity in the Former United States of America.

sex crimes conviction followed by LIFETIME registration over a hooker! no matter what her real age might have been!

Posted by: rodsmith | Mar 23, 2011 5:18:10 PM

as for this girls's statement!

" told reporters after Taylor was sentenced to six years probation in a New York court that she wanted to see him got to jail."

sorry he's got a hell of a lot more than 6 years probation. He can now look forwarward to an ILLEGAL sentence of LIFETIME probation which is all the sex offender registry has become.

Yes i said lifetime. Since he lives in florida there's where he will be registered and they don't do tier's or any of that other stuff

they have "sex offenders" and "sex predators" all get LIFETIME REGISTRATION! residence and working restrictions, computer restrictions, as well as limited contract with any minor's till successful completion of a sex offender treatment program.

trust me once he's had a little time ...he will wish he was in jail. it's easier time!

Posted by: rodsmith | Mar 23, 2011 5:22:10 PM

I don’t don’t understand why he did the interview in the first place. He couldn’t have looked more guilty if he tried: http://morningquickie.com/2011/03/23/lawrence-taylor-underage-prostitution-charges-defence-interview-everybody-does-it/

He totally blew those soft-ball questions and dug himself into a bigger hole. Why didn’t someone stop him?

(I'm a journalist with a law degree).

Posted by: Morning Quickie | Mar 24, 2011 3:19:57 PM

Dear Morning Quickie, aka: (Journalist with a Law Degree):

Your education (indoctrination) is more than useless here! Why would you admit to your indoctrination and stupidity to understand the issues?

What are sex crimes in a political and historical environment? Raping children is one thing but "she" came to meet him. Are all sexual urges bad (Yes, if you are Gloria Aldred) and yes, if you are a puny politico sacrificing this country to the NOW vote.

Why are we bankrupt? Because of lazy thinkers like you!

Posted by: albeed | Mar 25, 2011 12:28:40 AM

Adulthood begins at 14 if one applies Daubert standards to the age of consent laws. It has for 10,000 years of human history, as well. At age 18, nothing happens that doesn't happen at age 17 or 19. This case is an example of the hunt of the productive male by the vile feminist lawyer.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Mar 25, 2011 5:44:32 AM

gonna have to give SC this one! hit it right on the head!

Unless of course the govt wants to admit the U.S. Education system has made children dumber now then they have been for the previous 1,000,000 YEARS of human history?

Posted by: rodsmith | Mar 25, 2011 1:15:16 PM

How hypocritical of the girl based on the facts of the case. But this is her 15 minutes of fame/shame.

Posted by: GilbertsHumptyDumpty | Apr 3, 2011 2:29:55 PM

Thanks for your share,thanks a lot.Good luck!

Posted by: Big pony | Apr 11, 2011 6:17:38 AM

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