Earlier this week the news broke about an Iowan youth minister conducting a unique exorcism of sorts on teenage boys that were having homosexual “tendencies.” According to his victims, Brent Girouex would trick these boys into having sex with him to make them sexually pure. While he was allegedly raping these boys, he would pray over them and their ejaculation would be releasing their bodies of the homosexual “demons.” He was charged with 60 counts of child exploitation by a counselor or therapist for raping four boys with one as young as 14. At least eight more victims have since stepped forward. Girouex was recently sentenced to 17 years in prison, however the sentence was suspended. A suspended sentence means that prison sentence looms over your head for a certain amount of time, in this case five years, and if the individual doesn’t get in trouble again or violate the rules of their conditional release, the prison sentence will be wiped out. Girouex has been sentenced to five years of probation and he is required to attend sexual offender treatment with the suspended 17 year sentence over his head. Now, you might be asking why this individual is not behind bars. According to the judge, it’s because Girouex’s victims continued to seek him out after their first encounter. Well, of course they’re going to want more! If he’s telling some confused teenagers that they’ll be “cured” of being gay by having sex with him, of course they’re going to seek more “treatment” from him. If I believed this man in my teens when I was as religious as I was, and fearful my family would disown me, you’d better believe I’d be doing anything to get rid of those “demons” in my body. A gay teenager is vulnerable, and in a time when they needed someone to trust and confide in, this man victimized them. Now their perpetrator is going to walk free and probably offend more innocent victims.
Another story recently broke involving a Montana teacher that raped a 14-year-old girl. Stacey Dean Rambold had three encounters with the minor before being charged for the crimes. The minor was so tormented by this teacher’s actions that she committed suicide before the case went to trial. Rambold was ordered to attend sex offender therapy, but was eventually kicked out of the program. He was recently sentenced and given 15 years in prison, but the Judge G. Todd Baugh only ordered him to serve 31 days with a one day credit. Therefore, he was sentenced to just a month in jail for raping and tormenting a girl that led to her death. The judge made this ruling because he said the girl had just as much control over the situation as the teacher did and that she was older than her chronological age. The judge is going to likely change the sentence as the public outcry has been large and state law may require that Rambold serve at least two years in prison. The “Honorable” Baugh is up for reelection soon.
I read and hear about these stories and I can’t help but to think what the hell is wrong with our justice system? When did these judges go back to the “victim deserved it” mentality? A woman is wearing a revealing shirt, so it’s her fault that she got raped. No, it’s not the victims fault.
These cases made me think of the Kaitlyn Hunt case in Florida. Yes, I believe she’s a perpetrator and should be held accountable for her actions. I wonder how can a man that held power over these four boys and fed them absolutely ludicrous claims just to molest and rape them walk free or give a man that also had control over a female student 30 days in jail while Kaitlyn Hunt could be facing 15 years in prison? I know she was offered a plea deal that she should have taken, and there’s still a chance she could walk without much of a punishment, but there are extenuating circumstances that can excuse any lenient sentence she is given. I don’t see any obvious extenuating circumstances in the cases against Brent Girouex and Stacey Dean Rambold.
I don’t support minimum sentences for crimes, but I do support a recommended minimum sentence that allows a judge or jury to a set a sentence on a case-by-case basis while considering the recommended minimum sentence. A key component to sentences is to deter the perpetrator as well as the public on committing future crimes. If we’re not punishing sexual predators for raping our children, then we’re setting a precedence that encourages them to continue their predatory practices. Sex offenders, especially repeat offenders would marvel at the idea of being able to commit heinous crimes against the vulnerable and being given no jail time to a very minimal amount. We must call upon our politicians to hold judges that have blatant disregard for humanity accountable for their rulings. If judges are elected to their position in your state, I encourage you to look into some of their rulings to see if they deserve the bench they serve. They are here to keep the people safe and protected, not to protect criminals.