Trial transcripts reveal that the assailant and his attorneys attempted to discredit the victim and argued that attack on an unconscious woman was consensual sex
New records from the Stanford sexual assault trial show how former swimmer Brock Turner and his attorneys attempted to discredit the victim and argued that the attack on the unconscious woman constituted consensual sex.
More than 1,000 pages of trial transcripts, obtained by the Guardian on Friday, offer a window into how the criminal justice system treats sexual assault survivors.
The testimony of Turner and his supporters sheds new light on the traumatizing process described by the victim in her emotional impact statement, which launched a national debate about sexual violence.
The documents also reveal that Turner allegedly laughed at bystanders who intervened during the assault on the Stanford campus. Turner changed his story throughout the process and came to trial with a version of the events that contradicted his earlier statements and the testimony of witnesses and police.
The 20-year-old was convicted of sexual assault with intent to rape an intoxicated woman and sexually penetrating an intoxicated and unconscious person with a foreign object. Two bystanders caught him thrusting on top of the motionless woman outside a fraternity house by a dumpster on 18 January 2015.
The case sparked outrage in June when Turner was sentenced to six months in county jail significantly lighter than the minimum punishment of two years in state prison prescribed by law. Judge Aaron Persky is now facing a high-profile recall campaign and on Thursday removed himself from all criminal cases in the wake of intense scrutiny.
I tried to verbally ask, you know, Are you OK?
The court records include testimony from police officials and the two men who intervened, all of which establish that Turner had assaulted a woman, aged 22 at the time of the assault, who was visibly unconscious and who awoke hours later with no memory.
Deputy Jeff Taylor said that when he approached the woman, I tried to verbally ask, you know, Are you OK? Can you hear me? And I was getting no response. So I started doing it quite a bit louder, basically to the point of yelling at her to see if I could get any response whatsoever. And I didnt get anything.
Peter Jonsson, one of two graduate students hailed as a hero for rescuing the victim, testified that she looked asleep, according to the transcript. Turner tried to run away as fast as he could when they approached, Jonsson said.
After they stopped Turner, Jonsson continued: I noticed that he was smiling. So I said, Why are you smiling? Stop smiling. I said, again, What are you doing? Shes unconscious.