Teenager who filmed himself raping girl 'deserves leniency,' sez judge

dublinbay z6 (KS)

He deserves leniency because he is from a "good" family?

Lots of protests are being sent to the judge.

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"[Judge] James Troiano denied a request in 2018 for a 16-year-old boy accused of raping an intoxicated 16-year-old girl to be tried as an adult.

The Monmouth County Superior Court Judge said the defendant “comes from a good family who put him into an excellent school where he was doing extremely well.”

The teenage boy was accused of recording himself sexually assaulting the 16-year-old girl and sending the video to friends with the caption “when your first time is rape.”

Mr Troiano’s decision, which surfaced last week, sparked a fierce response and has been viewed as evidence the US legal system is two-tier and has different rules for those who are privileged.

The 69-year-old, who has spent almost three decades on the bench, and his family are now receiving death threats and there have been a number of calls for him to resign, reports the New York Times.

[...]

A Change.org petition calls for the NJ State Assembly to impeach the judge and a protest is scheduled to take place at Monmouth County Superior Court later this week.

The threats come as politicians and members of the public call for Mr Troiano to be disbarred, including from Democratic presidential hopeful Cory Booker.

[. . . ]

The teenager is accused of raping a girl, who has been referred to under the alias of Mary in court documents, in a basement during a house party in 2017.

Court documents say Mary was intoxicated, slurring her words and stumbling as she walked into the basement with the teenager. They say she suffered bruising and hand prints from others slapping her on her backside, which she told her mother about the next day.

Court documents say the accused teen allegedly recorded the assault and shared it with friends – adding that the girl's bare torso is exposed and her head is repeatedly banged against a wall in the recording.

[. . .]

Family court proceedings are usually closed to the public but some of Mr Troiano’s remarks - taken from a 65-page transcript of his sealed decision - were revealed when an appeals court decision surfaced.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/judge-said-teenager-filmed-himself-104208663.html

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Wouldn't want a rape charge to ruin the boy's future, after all!


Kate


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Kathy

Privilege has its benefits. Don’t want to ruin a nice boy. Reminds me of Kavanaugh and his buddies. Who cares about the trauma the girl experienced? This is the double standard still existing in a huge portion of society.

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Pidge_

How would you like having your daughter date this rapist? Imagine marrying him and sharing his bed. Shudder.

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dandyfopp

Guys that psychopath might have a bright future.

SCOTUS someday.

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blfenton

Another case of affluenza?

If it is deemed that the young man should not be raised to adult court it should be for a legal reason and not because he comes from a good family.

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Pidge_

How "good" is a family that raises a rapist? I realize that parents can't be responsible for everything their children do, but I'd want to know about this lot before I made a judgment.

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ubro(2a)

“comes from a good family who put him into an excellent school where he was doing extremely well.”

And?????? flip this judge needs to go, makes me wonder how many other cases he heard, how many other 'excellent scholars' were given perks. The man obviously cannot do his job properly.

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patriciae_gw(07)

While I do not believe in Juveniles being tried as adults they still have to be held accountable for what they do. That has to be built into the Juvenile justice system.

The judge is an idiot, but people have no business blaming his family for his failing any more than the kid getting off for having a good family. Our justice system sucks.

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rob333 (zone 7a)

Unfortunately, the judge has received death threats. Now that is too far. Maybe he might find another line of work, but death is too much. I'm ashamed of what the US has become (I couldn't type America as it's a continent we share with others who don't need their name tarnished).

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Chi

"Prosecutors, the judge said, should have explained to the girl and her family that pressing charges would destroy the boy’s life."

This makes me sick. THIS is why so many women don't report rape. This teenager was not only raped, but the rape was recorded and sent around to her peers. This girl was violated in so many ways and the judge is more worried about the charges ruining the rapist's life! What about HER life being destroyed? No one cares about that?

Saying she should have been warned about the impact on her rapist's life before pressing charges. Ugh.

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Joaniepoanie

Under the judges logic, if this same thing occurred with a regular kid from a regular school with average grades he'd have no problem trying him as an adult? Alrighty then.

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Chi

We know if this had been a poor kid or a kid of a different race it would have gone very differently.

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foodonastump

Liked this google review of the judge:


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Moxie

"Prosecutors, the judge said, should have explained to the girl and her family that pressing charges would destroy the boy’s life."

The video caption makes it clear that he understood the nature of his act. Sharing the video shows that he didn't fear serious repercussions. I wish pressing charges would destroy the boy's life. Unfortunately, it won't.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

He’s on the opposite coast, but this judge Troiano reminds of the one who gave a very lenient sentence to the Stanford athlete convicted of rape. The poor guy had already suffered enough.

I believe the judge in the Stanford case was recalled — petitions circulated and enough signatures collected that the recall was put on the ballot. He’s gone now iirc.

Is this remedy available in NJ?

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artemis_ma

I don't care how good a family you come from, or how well you are doing in your studies... the brat needed several books thrown at him. Something like that is just not a trivial "mistake".

This judge does need to suffer the career consequences of his stupid ruling, but death threats and the like are also way out of line.


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Delilah66

Surprised I haven’t seen a protestation here about it not being a real rape.

”While I do not believe in Juveniles being tried as adults they still have to be held accountable for what they do.“

I know someone who works for the county public defender’s office whose job it is to determine whether a juvenile being charged as an adult would be better served being charged as a juvenile. The issue being that there are far better rehabilitation programs available in the juvenile correction system than for adults. He says he has many times advised not to fight the prosecution on that issue when the accused is unlikely to be rehabilitated wrt the crime. Sounded reasonable to me but it’s a case by case issue.

My personal opinion of this case? I hope this 16 y/o doesn’t get Epstein’s lawyer.

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patriciae_gw(07)

Delilah, the big issue is that children who are charged with crimes as adults too often end up in adult correctional facilities. They are treated as if they are adults. The reasoning or total lack of reasoning of juveniles is why civilized countries have the category of juvenile crimes. You cant decide to charge a juvenile as an adult just because the crime they committed was particularly heinous but not when it isn't. It isn't the crime that makes them a special category it is their age and knowledge and impulse control and common sense and all the things that makes kids kids and why it is wrong that we wont let you drive but we will charge you as an adult. How does that make sense. This particular juvenile should have the juvenile book thrown at him.

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tony jelly

No. the Big Issue is that this judge believes criminal acts are only carried out by lower class beings, and this is a view shared by many. Take our president as an example, he is accused of rape by a couple of dozen women and he gets the same prison sentence as this teenager.

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dandyfopp

Money and image. People believe the image of success = good.

Good family, good student, good businessman, good person.

If they are not good why do they have so much? How did they get where they are?

It is how we got Donnie. With some help from Vlad of course.

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Delilah66

Patriciae yes they do end up in an adult facility, which has no ability to help a juvenile. The problem arises when a juvenile is tried in the juvenile system (which is more likely to allow the juvenile freedom) even when the services available to the accused are unlikely to work, is allowed freedom and goes on to do more harm to society. Keep in mind, too, I’m talking about DEFENDING the juvenile’s rights not a prosecutor’s evaluation. To me, this is a win-win or at least a much better approach than a juvenile who does not have that pre-trial service available.


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maifleur01

For some cases I think juveniles should be tried as adults. 16 is an iffy age to try as a juvenile. If convicted by the time sentencing happens in most states he would be an adult, 18. Too old for juvenile detention so likely only to get probation as those tried under juvenile rules can not be sent to adult prisons. If he is tried as an adult and convicted he could actually be sent to prison.

While not rape I had two cousins that walked free because they were tried in juvenile court and they turned 18 before the appeals were finished. Different states have different rules and I do not know the laws of the state that this happened. I only know that some older teens should be tried as adults.

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numbersjunkie

Hopefully this is not a question that will lead to partisan bickering. This is not acceptable. The Judge should resign or be impeached.

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elvis

The teenage boy was accused of recording himself sexually assaulting the 16-year-old girl and sending the video to friends with the caption “when your first time is rape.”

That's a scary human being.

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mrskjun(9)

That judge should be recalled. Rape is not rape if you come from a good family? That's sickening.

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Kathy

Makes me wonder if he was paid off. Since it hit the media he will be exposed.

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queenmargo

Me thinks that perhaps that "good family" paid off that judge.

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queenmargo

LOL Kathy- we FINALLY think alike!!

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patriciae_gw(07)

Isn't it more likely that he thinks this way. He is not the first judge to do this sort of thing.

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Delilah66

Exactly patriciae! Good family ≠ not guilty

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JodiK

Rape is a violent crime... the perpetrator should have the book thrown at him! Who cares what sort of family he comes from... he committed a violent crime!

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Chi

Yeah, this judge has a pretty terrible definition of rape. Apparently rape is only when there are multiple men in an abandoned area at gunpoint. And sending a video of an under aged girl being raped was "stupid crap" and the rape didn't show "cruelty" or a "predatory nature." IMO, he should have child porn charges on top of the rape charges for distributing the video.

""In my mind," Troiano said, a rape is "where there were generally two or more generally males involved, either at gunpoint or weapon, clearly manhandling a person into ... an area where ... there was nobody around, sometime in an abandon[ed] house, sometimes in an abandon[ed] shed, shack, and just simply taking advantage of the person as well as beating the person, threatening the person."

Troiano added that G.M.C.'s text calling the encounter a rape was "to me, just a 16-year-old boy saying stupid crap to his friends."

"[D]o I believe that it shows in any way a calculation or cruelty on his part or sophistication or a predatory nature? No, I do not," Troiano said.

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

My view is that if your old enough to know that you are commiting a rape, you are an adult.

He didn't act on impulse or fail to understand the seriousness of his actions. He knew what he was doing (and probably calculated on being tried as a juvenile).

It is in situations like this that my baser side thirsts for cowboy justice.

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Linda

Fortunately, the other judges disagreed and the case will proceed. But there are too many judges out there who think that young rapists shouldn't be inconvenienced by the consequences of their actions. Especially those from a "good family". Is that code words for an influential white family?

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Tilly Teabag

Wealthy people all over the world get better outcomes in court even without corruption. They can pay bail. They can pay better, or the best, lawyers. They can pay for rehabilitation programs or psychologists to show the sentencing judge the perp is trying to change. They can pay to find “evidence”. The list goes on.

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rob333 (zone 7a)

Sandy, I read that very differently. I read it as, the whole system is wrong if all you have to do to do well is have money. Poor people should have an equal footing and that can't happen as long as wealthy people can buy what is needed to fare better. Why can it be bought? That is a sickening thought.

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bob_cville

If the judge personally feels the teenager deserves leniency, the judge
should recuse himself, the teen should be tried elsewhere (as an adult) ,
and then the judge perhaps can voluntarily serve the sentence in prison
instead of the teen.

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JodiK

Rape is rape. It's a violent crime. It deserves fitting punishment! As I said in a post that's now gone.



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patriciae_gw(07)

I will say this again. A teen is not an adult. They are underdeveloped in their world view and understanding of the damage they are doing and the way their brains work. All first world countries have special systems for dealing with teenage criminals. You do not decide a person is an adult based on what they do because they did what they did as not adults. This does not mean they are not treated as serious criminals and as people who have committed a serious crime but there is a separate system for them. That we don't have a plan for what to do with them when they get older and actually become adults is on us. It costs us more to not just dump them into a regular prison population where it is known they will be preyed upon and too many people think this is justice because they have done something really horrible but we are supposed to separate ourselves from vengeance and certainly the vengeance of the prison population. That makes us just as bad as any other rapist. We are supposed to be moral and humane if not why have laws at all?

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Delilah66

"In my mind," Troiano said, a rape is "where there were generally two or more generally males involved, either at gunpoint or weapon, clearly manhandling a person into ... an area where ... there was nobody around, sometime in an abandon[ed] house, sometimes in an abandon[ed] shed, shack, and just simply taking advantage of the person as well as beating the person, threatening the person."

I do know I don’t want to be in his mind. More importantly, though, is that his sentence should begin, “According to the laws of New Jersey, rape is....”

The judge should have stuck to the teen’s ability to be rehabilitated, which is more apt to happen when sentenced as a juvenile. Money is not a factor. I hope the teen’s lawyer had him evaluated for rehabilitation before they appeared before the judge. He did not help the teen or himself with his words. He sounded like trump extemporizing.

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miss lindsey (still misses Sophie)(8a)

“[G.M.C.’s] conduct as it relates to the charged offenses was both sophisticated and predatory. He was aware of the off-limits areas in advance of the party,” prosecutors said, adding that “filming a cellphone video while committing the assault was a deliberate act of debasement.”

Troianoalso “expressed concern that the prosecutor did not indicate … that she had explained to Mary and her mother the devastating effect” adult charges would have on G.M.C.’s life, the appeals court ruling said.

Butthe appeals court said prosecutors at least proved that “the delinquent act in question, if committed by an adult in this case, would have been aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault,” which would allow for the case to go to adult court.

https://nbcpalmsprings.com/2019/07/03/new-jersey-judge-spared-teen-rape-suspect-because-he-came-from-good-family/

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Tilly Teabag

Sandy

"Wealthy people all over the world get better outcomes in court even
without corruption. They can pay bail. They can pay better, or the best,
lawyers. They can pay for rehabilitation programs or psychologists to
show the sentencing judge the perp is trying to change. They can pay to
find “evidence”. The list goes on."


“I hope you are not saying this makes it okay.”

If I was saying that I would have, so, no.

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Linda

We really, really need more female judges! And we really, really need more female politicians!

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JodiK

Even a minor should know about consent... and this one obviously did judging by the video and its caption.

If he comes from a good family, he should have been taught the difference between conscious and consenting, and unable to consent. And who in their right mind films a rape featuring themselves, and passes it to others for their viewing? I'm questioning the term "good family", or that he made a mistake. The accompanying caption kind of says it all, doesn't it?

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JodiK

Actually, that's premeditated rape... stiffer penalty.

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lurker111

In New Jersey, when determining the most
appropriate court for a sex charge involving someone under 18, personal
factors, including whether the juvenile is likely to be a delinquent, are required, by statute, to be considered.

“Family background is directly in issue, as any psychologist will confirm,”
James H. Maynard, an attorney who specializes in sex offense law, said
in an email. “Because the family context, support and participation are
relevant, and important, in juvenile sex-offender treatment.”

I don't mean to upset anyone but I haven't read anywhere that she was raped. Just slapped on the backside. It may be spelled out somewhere, but not here or in the NYT linked article.

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gyr_falcon(Sunset 23)

Mary and G.M.C. had intercourse in the darkened room. G.M.C. filmed
himself penetrating Mary from behind on his cell phone, displaying her bare
torso, and her head hanging down.

https://njcourts.gov/attorneys/assets/opinions/appellate/unpublished/a0223-18.pdf

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

From the OP:

"The teenage boy was accused of recording himself sexually assaulting the 16-year-old girl and sending the video to friends with the caption “when your first time is rape.”

The accused teenage boy seems to be under the impression that he raped her.

Why would anyone disagree with him if he insists on calling "rape"?

Kate

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bry911

I don't mean to upset anyone but I haven't read anywhere that she was raped.

It is amazing how easy it is to not read things when you actively try to avoid it...

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lurker111

Slapping someone on the butt is a sexual assault. That's all the articles said. I don't accept half written internet articles. Sorry.

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bry911

Slapping someone on the butt is a sexual assault. That's all the articles said. I don't accept half written internet articles. Sorry.

You also very pointedly don't look for any source you would accept. Which do you think is the bigger problem?

I actually didn't form an opinion on whether or not it was rape as that was not the point of the story. Regardless of the crime committed giving someone a break because they come from a good family and go to a good school is not acceptable.

However, the moment I did look, it became very clear that this was more than a slap on the butt.

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lurker111

You also very pointedly don't look for any source you would accept. Which do you think is the bigger problem?

Just not that interested. Sorry. I looked at the sources provided in the OP and it wasn't sufficient.

I actually didn't form an opinion on whether or not it was rape as that was not the point of the story.

Neither did I. Again, I went to the linked article for more info and it wasn't there.

Regardless of the crime committed giving someone a break because they
come from a good family and go to a good school is not acceptable.

Talk to the State of NJ about that.

Happy now?


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Uptown Gal

What he needs is to have his "manhood" cut off, and the film of it happening

put out there everywhere possible. That's leniency...it's a bit better than killing

him outright. See if that pleases the "good family" that raised the zero human.

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maifleur01

Good there was a boy from a good family that killed a couple of people by plowing his car into the back of a stopped one at a high rate of speed while drunk that the judge put him on a very short probation. Two years later he repeated the same damn thing on the same city street.

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Karen S. (7b, NYC)(NYC, zone 6)

I posted this elsewhere about this several days ago.

This rapist's self awareness that it IS rape that shows us he needs to be tried as an adult. Deliberate, knowing & seemingly premeditated RAPE. That should mean Go To Jail, for a LONG time. This isn't a 'mistake' like he forgot to return a library book. He's clear that the girl's drunkenness makes consent impossible, therefore it's rape! Did the judge also miss the mention of her head being banged against the wall repeatedly? That's assault, also no minor matter. I agree he should be removed from the bench, but also disbarred, because his bias is too strong for him to practice law.


I just heard this on my local news, but was only half listening. A NJ judge was removed from the bench for what sounds like the comments made in this case. I flipped back to opening post, Monmouth, NJ, bet it was him. Good, people should be so outraged!

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gyr_falcon(Sunset 23)

That is good news, Karen S. The judge decided to step down.

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elvis

FTR, I'm glad this judge was censured.

___________

I agree he should be removed from the bench, but also disbarred, because his bias is too strong for him to practice law.

By that standard, anyone who serves the public should be removed from his/her job if there is a "strong bias", i.e., teachers, law enforcement officers, shopkeepers, librarians...and so on.


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Red Sox

Shades of Brock Turner. Adult crime should = adult sentence.

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