A fifteen year old UK girl who independently sought justice received no jail time after she stabbed a man in the chest with a kitchen knife. The details? She was sexually abused by this man as a child, and when sentenced for his crimes he only received community service.
Years later it was discovered the man was still harassing her. Whether that harassment was in the form of abuse or not has not been disclosed. However, the victim felt she had endured enough, and that is when she decided to take action.
The justice system had failed the unnamed girl, but she would no longer be a victim to this man who had made her life a nightmare and continued to do so. She entered her abuser’s home and stabbed him in the chest with a kitchen knife. Believing she had killed him, she then turned herself over to the authorities where she was initially charged with attempted murder. It was later discovered her abuser survived.
The girl sat in Judge Jonathan Durham Hall’s courtroom and recounted her story. She receited her traumatic childhood at the hands of her abuser and lead up to the stabbing. As if it out of a procedural television show, the judge did not slam down his gavel and sentence her to life in prison. Instead, Judge Hall commended the young teenager for her bravery.
Judge Hall told the girl she was a “survivor” and he would not meet her actions with jail time. In fact, he released a statement in which he declared “It is self-evident that this offense was caused by, and solely related to, the impact of the offending upon you when you were eight. It would be a disgrace to send a survivor like you to prison.”
The judge then followed up his lack of a sentence filled with hard time with an offer to pay her court fees, as well as any others that may occur following the incident in the future.
The teenager’s attorney echoed Judge Hall’s sentiments, stating “She was left deeply troubled and scarred. …This is an exceptional case which requires exceptional course. This deeply troubled and damaged child, bedeviled by low self-esteem, is crying out for help.”
While no jail time would be served, Judge Hall did sentence the teenager to a two year youth rehabilitation program.
Do you think if this was to happen in America the teenager would face equal treatment? Or do you think she would be facing time behind bars?