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

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

I use to hand down tough sentences...

Tonight must be my night for revisiting older posts. It seems I've been spending the last hours searching over and updating different cases. I'd thought I was just starting to wrap things up when one more old case was brought up to me once again.

Judge Edward Cashman had earned his very own post on here for his incredible announcement that he was contemplating letting a admitted child rapist get off with a tap on the hand sentence and a "treatment program". When I read the story the first time, I was shocked and outraged that someone entrusted to serve as a judge would even consider this as a form of "justice".
Mark Hulett was looking at years behind bars for the repeated rape of a young girl. Reports indicated that the child had been only seven when the four years of sexual abuse at the hand of this monster began. The Prosecutor argued that Hulett had raped the child more than 50 times over the span of years. The judge in the case was considering a two months sentence, with 9 nine days of sex offender treatment as the sentence. The thought was appalling. That this man would walk free after such a short amount of time was sickening. When the judge first informed the court that he was considering such a careless sentence, he also postponed the sentencing hearing. He then told the family and those in the court that his explanation of his judgement would be revealed at the time of sentencing.
Well, I am angered to tell you that the judge held the hearing earlier today. And he did give the before mentioned sentence rather than the 8 years the prosecutor has requested.
The incredible reason behind this disgusting sentence?

The judge said he no longer believes in punishment and is more concerned about rehabilitation.
Prosecutors argued that confessed child-rapist Mark Hulett, 34, of Williston deserved at least eight years behind bars for repeatedly raping a littler girl countless times starting when she was seven.But Judge Edward Cashman disagreed explaining that he no longer believes that punishment works. "The one message I want to get through is that anger doesn't solve anything.
It just corrodes your soul," said Judge Edward Cashman speaking to a packed Burlington courtroom. Most of the on-lookers were related to a young girl who was repeatedly raped by Mark Hulett who was in court to be sentenced. Full Source

Yes, you read that right. He no longer believes in tough sentencing. Anger does not solve anything, I am in agreement with that, however letting a admitted child rapist off with what amounts to next to nothing- doesn't solve anything either. The statistics show that treatment is not always the best of options. It also show that the longer a predator remains free, the higher the risk of them re offending becomes.
I would like to know just when Judge Edward Cashman decided that he is no longer in favor of tough sentencing. Because, after doing a little searching for cases that have been presented before him, I found many- dating even up until recently where he handed out maximum sentences. There was even one that went beyond the max, and was later overturned. And yet now, now during this case- which is horrifying enough with out the sentence details- he decided that he's against tough punishment?
In the end of the hearing, Cashman allowed Mark Hulett to slide by with a 60 day sentence. It doesn't even begin to compare to the years of pain this child has already suffered, or the years she will likely continue to suffer due to the heinous actions of this man. I have no doubt that the suffering will be shared by the members of her family, both now and in the future.

Judge Cashman explained that he is more concerned that Hulett receive sex offender treatment as rehabilitation. But under Department of Corrections
classification, Hulett is considered a low-risk for re-offense so he does not qualify for in-prison treatment.So the judge sentenced him to just 60 days in prison and then Hulett must complete sex treatment when he gets out or face a possible life sentence.

In this case, like to many other ones like it out there, justice was not served. A judge took advantage of his position to play russian roulette with the lives of not only this child, but all who will no doubt cross the path of this predator in the future. We elect judges, and appoint them in the hopes that they serve the bench well. That they sift through the facts and administer punishment as the law sees fit, and as it provides justice. In this case, one man took it upon himself to disgrace the robe he wears, and let a monster go free- after only 60 days. It's disheartening and horrid that he has made this choice.
I can only express my sincere concern for the family, and for the victim in this case. They were betrayed not just by the brutal rape of this innocent child- but by a man pretending to be a judge.

~~More information will be posted on this heinous case as I continue to follow it.

Previous Posts on This Case, in order:
Judge Edward Cashman
Judge Edward Cashman, Continued
Hulett Sentencing Looked At

You may also want to check out SSCAT, a fellow crime blogger who is also covering the story here.
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CrimeSceneBlog said...

Cases such as this one lend more impetus for sentencing guidelines that cannot be ignored.

Magnolia said...

Uh oh...someone just sent me this story and I posted on it..I'm sorry...normally I check first.
I don't know the woman, but she sounded so very sincere and upset.

Christopher Largen said...

If only Mark Hulett had grown some pot instead, then the courts would have sent him to jail for years! All in the name of "protecting the children".