Judge apologizes for rape victims comments

Judge accused of blaming victim in rape case: "I owe all our citizens an apology." (Source: KTVQ/CNN)
Judge accused of blaming victim in rape case: "I owe all our citizens an apology." (Source: KTVQ/CNN)

YELLOWSTONE COUNTY, MT (KTVQ/CNN) - Outrage grows over the sentence Montana District Judge G. Todd Baugh handed down to a confessed rapist: just 30 days in jail. Not only is the length of time causing outrage but it's what the judge said when making his ruling.

"In the Rambold sentencing, I made some references to the victim's age and control. I'm not sure just what I was attempting to say at that point, but it didn't come out correct," Baugh said.

The sentence for former high school teacher Stacey Rambold for breaking his plea agreement in the 2008 rape of Cherice Morales, 14.

In handing down his sentence, the judge said Morales "Was as in as much control" as her then 49-year-old rapist adding that Morales presented herself as "Older than her chronological age." The judge now under fire for blaming the victim is taking back the words, but he's not changing the sentence.

"What I said was demeaning to all women. Not what I believe in and irrelevant to the sentencing. I owe all our citizens an apology. As to the sentence itself, I'll add an addendum to the court file that will hopefully better explain the sentence," Baugh said.

Morales took her own life just before trial in 2010 - she was 17 years old.

The prosecution's case fell apart, a plea deal was struck, Rambold's 15 year sentence suspended, and he was put on probation only but Rambold didn't live up to it.

Yellowstone County prosecutors wanted him put away for 30 years, instead Rambold got 30 days.

Outrage over the sentence taking social media by storm and at least three petitions urging the removal of Judge Baugh are soliciting signatures.

Hundreds of protesters are expected to gather at billing's courthouse, they want Baugh to resign and the state's attorney general to get the ruling reversed.

The attorney general's office says it's reviewing the case.

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