The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil,
but because of those who look on and do nothing.

~~~ Albert Einstein



Friday, January 06, 2006

Hulett Sentencing Looked At

Previous Posts on This Case, in order:
Judge Edward Cashman
I use to hand down tough sentences...
Judge Edward Cashman, Continued


The Vermont Department of Corrections has indicated that it will be looking at the sentence Judge Edward Cashman gave to Mark Hulett to see whether they can hold him for longer than the 60 day sentence.

The state Corrections Department is planning a complete review of sex-offender Mark Hulett's case, including whether he should remain ineligible for counseling
while in prison and whether the department can hold him longer than his controversial 60-day minimum sentence, Commissioner Rob Hofmann said Thursday. Source

Every so often, I appeal to the less emotional side of myself to do a bit of researching on the law. This was one of those times. We clearly know a few things about this case:
Location: Vermont
Crime: Rape
Victims Age: Under 16
Relationship: Not a parent, not married

Given just that I took a few moments to look into Vermont state laws on rape and sexual assault. First I'll give you the Statues, and then my commentary on them.





§ 3252. Sexual assault

(a) A person who engages in a sexual act with another person and

(1) Compels the other person to participate in a sexual act:

(A) Without the consent of the other person; or

(B) By threatening or coercing the other person; or

(C) By placing the other person in fear that any person will suffer imminent bodily injury; or

(2) Has impaired substantially the ability of the other person to appraise or control conduct by administering or employing drugs or intoxicants without the knowledge or against the will of the other person; or

(3) The other person is under the age of 16, except where the persons are married to each other and the sexual act is consensual; or

(4) The other person is under the age of 18 and is entrusted to the actor's care by authority of law or is the actor's child, grandchild, foster child, adopted child or step-child;

shall be imprisoned for not more than 20 years, or fined not more than $10,000.00, or both.

(b) A person who engages in a sexual act with another person under the age of 16 and

(1) the victim is entrusted to the actor's care by authority of law or is the actor's child, grandchild, foster child, adopted child or step-child; or

(2) the actor is at least 18 years of age, resides in the victim's household and serves in a parental role with respect to the victim;

shall be imprisoned for not more than 35 years, or fined not more than $25,000.00, or both. (Added 1977, No. 51, § 1; amended 1985, No. 83, § 2; 1989, No. 293 (Adj. Sess.), § 5.)






§ 3253. Aggravated sexual assault.
(a) A person commits the crime of aggravated sexual assault if the person commits sexual assault under any one of the following circumstances:

(1) At the time of the sexual assault, the actor causes serious bodily injury to the victim or to another.

(2) The actor is joined or assisted by one or more persons in physically restraining, assaulting or sexually assaulting the victim.

(3) The actor commits the sexual act under circumstances which constitute the crime of kidnapping.

(4) The actor has previously been convicted in this state of sexual assault under subdivision 3252(a)(1) or (2) of this title or aggravated sexual assault or has been convicted in any jurisdiction in the United States or territories of an offense which would constitute sexual assault under subdivision 3252(a)(1) or (2) of this title or aggravated sexual assault if committed in this state.


(5) At the time of the sexual assault, the actor is armed with a deadly weapon and uses or threatens to use the deadly weapon on the victim or on another.

(6) At the time of the sexual assault, the actor threatens to cause imminent serious bodily injury to the victim or to another and the victim reasonably believes that the actor has the present ability to carry out the threat.


(7) At the time of the sexual assault, the actor applies deadly force to the victim.

(8) The victim is under the age of 10 and the actor is at least 18 years of age.


(9) The victim is subjected by the actor to repeated nonconsensual sexual acts as part of the same occurrence or the victim is subjected to repeated nonconsensual sexual acts as part of the actor's common scheme and plan.


(b) A person who commits the crime of aggravated sexual assault shall be imprisoned up to and including life or fined not more than $50,000.00, or both. No person who receives a minimum sentence under this section shall be eligible for early release or furlough until the expiration of the minimum sentence imposed.


Added 1977, No. 51, § 1; amended 1989, No. 293 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 2005, No. 79, § 10.







§ 2602. Lewd or lascivious conduct with child

(a) No person shall wilfully and lewdly commit any lewd or lascivious act upon or with the body, or any part or member thereof, of a child under the age of 16 years, with the intent of arousing, appealing to, or gratifying the lust, passions, or sexual desires of such person or of such child.

(b) A person who violates subsection (a) of this section shall be:

(1) For a first offense, imprisoned not less than one year and not more than 15 years or fined not more than $5,000.00, or both.

(2) For a second offense, imprisoned not less than two years and not more than 30 years or fined not more than $10,000.00, or both.

(3) For a third offense, imprisoned not less than three years and up to and including life or fined not more than $25,000.00, or both. (Amended 1971, No. 199 (Adj. Sess.), § 15; 1995, No. 50, § 4; 2005, No. 79, § 9.)





Those are the qualifying laws Via LexisNexis for Vermont. Hulett plead guilty to "Aggravated sexual assault" and "Lewd or lascivious conduct with child", although under the guidelines he could have been convicted of "Sexual Assault" also.

You'll notice that not one of those offenses has "60" written anywhere in the statues. The reports coming our of Vermont say that this child was raped more than 50 times, although they clearly have not got Hulett on each count, even just the two counts could have gotten him a combined life term on the aggravated sexual assault, and 15 on the lewd conduct with a child. So even the 8 years that the State was willing to except was on the lower side of the sentencing guidelines.

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