CA--Victims blast Orange Co. judge over rapist’s sentence
For immediate release: Wednesday, April 8
Statement by Joelle Casteix of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (949 322 7434, firstname.lastname@example.org)
We are outraged that an Orange County judge reduced a child rapist’s sentence, claiming the criminal “did not appear to consciously intend to harm (the victim) when he sexually assaulted her.”
Kevin Jonas Rojano's crime, the judge says “is not typical of a predatory, violent brutal sodomy of a child case,” and for that reason, Judge M. Marc Kelly reduced his sentence.
Already, we suspect, other child molesters are planning to seek leniency just because their assaults were less brutal than others or in some other way “not typical.” That’s just wrong.
A “gentle” rape has as many life-altering and devastating impact as a “violent” rape. It makes no difference whether a victim stumbles across a predator’s path or is actively pursued by a predator.
It’s arrogant of a judge to claim to know another person’s intent. Second, it’s irresponsible of a judge to use his own speculation to help a predator spend less time in prison.
One can debate how many years a predator like Kevin Jonas Rojano should spend behind bars. But his intent isn’t debatable. Unless he’s mentally deficient – and no one suggests that he is – he surely knew he was doing wrong and hurting her.
We call on Judge Kelly to reverse himself – if it’s not too late – and explain his callous and hurtful move.
We also call on anyone else who may have seen, suspected or suffered crimes by Rojano to come forward. It’s crucial that other victims, witnesses and whistleblowers speak up so Rojano might be charged and convicted again and receive a more appropriate sentence.
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We were founded in 1988 and have more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.