Judge Attempts to Order New Hearing in Montana Teacher’s Rape Case
Outcry from the public has convinced Montana District Judge G. Todd Baugh to order a new sentencing hearing for the former Billings teacher who was previously sentenced to a mere 30 days in prison for raping a student. But does he have the authority to do so?
The sentence given by District Judge G. Todd Baugh made national headlines last month when he sentenced former teacher Stacey Rambold to only 30 days in jail for failing a court ordered sex offender treatment program Rambold was ordered to complete after pleaded guilty to a rape that occurred in 2008 of a 14-year-old student who later committed suicide in 2010. The sentencing sparked protests in Billings and on countless internet forums when Judge G. Todd Baugh claimed that the girl was "older than her chronological age" and was “as much in control of the situation" as Rambold was.
The judge has since come forward to say that he believes his sentence was wrong and and even apologized for his remarks. State law has a mandatory two-year minimum prison term for the charges brought upon Stacey Rambold.
However, even though the judge admitted his mistake, he may not have legal ability to call for a re-sentencing. State law requires illegal sentences to be handled through an appeal which the prosecution was already attempting to do.
Does the Judge's admission of fault change your opinion of him?