Former Stanford University swimmer and convicted sex offender Brock Turner has lost an appeal for a new trial despite controversial arguments from his lawyer that Turner shouldn’t have been convicted for attempted rape because he had only wanted “outercourse” with his victim. In a hearing at the 6th District Court of Appeal in San Jose on Wednesday, a three-judge panel ruled that there was “substantial evidence” that Turner received a fair trial. In a unanimous decision, Judge Franklin Elia noted that Turner had attempted to run after two graduate students caught him assaulting a then-22-year-old woman who appeared unconscious behind a dumpster.
“He did not explain or defend himself to them,” the judge wrote. “And he lied to police about running.”
Turner’s initial trial gained national notoriety after his lawyers tried to blame his behavior on “party culture” and his victim, in a powerful court statement that went viral after it was shared online, accused him of refusing to take accountability for his actions. Outrage over the case was exacerbated after Judge Aaron Persky sentenced Turner to just six months in jail — of which he only served three. In the wake of the controversy over the lenient sentence, Persky was subsequently recalled by California voters — becoming the first California judge in 80 years to face recall.
Following the rejection of his appeal, Turner will be required to register as a sex offender for life unless he attempts to petition his case before the California Supreme Court. Turner’s lawyer has yet to comment on whether they plan to do so.
Read the full story at The Associated Press.