Child Rapist Prison Sentence is Only 30 Days in Montana (CA Penal Code 261 and 261.5)

Last Modified: October 13, 2020
September 4, 2013 | Rabin Nabizadeh | Rape Attorney, Sex Crimes

There are many different and effective defenses against rape charges, but none such as the one used by 54-year-old former teacher (name withheld for privacy) who raped a student, resulting in her suicide before she was able to testify in court.  The rape occurred in 2007, when he was 48 and the girl was 14.  A District Judge in Montana, however, has sentenced Rambold to a mere 15 years in prison, while forcing him to serve only 30 days of that prescribed time. This has led representatives of both the state and of Yellowstone County to protest, considering that this sentence is, in effect, illegal.

In the state of California, laws concerning rape are quite similar (CA Penal Code 261). However, had his case been tried in this state (CA Penal Code 261.5) the law covering statutory rape, would have also applied, as the girl was under the age of majority and the offender was more than 18 years of age.  Additional civil penalties would have applied and he would have been looking at an added maximum fine of up to $25,000.  His sentence would have been more severe in California, 13 years in state prison, if not longer.

Again, while there are many persons who are wrongly accused of rape every year in the state of California, it is certain that this was not the circumstance in this case. Add the emotional damage that he managed to effect, enough for the young woman to commit suicide and it’s not difficult to imagine the outrage about his short sentencing.


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