Montana rape case judge G. Todd Baugh says he broke ethics code

Cherice Morales
Stacey Rambold, 54, walked out of prison after a 30 day sentence for raping his former student, Cherice Morales.
Credit: Facebook

Montana judge G. Todd Baugh acknowledged that his remarks about rape victim Cherice Morales broke judicial ethics rules, reports the AP. Baugh came under fire after he sentenced former teacher Stacey Jean Rambold, 54, to just one month in prison for the rape of Morales, his 14-year-old student, who later committed suicide. At the time, Baugh said, “I think people have in mind that this was some violent, forcible, horrible rape … but it wasn’t this forcible beat-up rape,” and said the victim “seemed older than her chronological age” and was “as much in control of the situation” as Rambold.

Protesters called for Baugh’s resignation after his remarks. Baugh, a District Judge at the Yellowstone County Courthouse in Billings, apologized and backpedaled. He even tried to overturn the sentence once he realized that Montana law required a mandatory minimum sentence of two years for Rambold. Baugh said he does not deserve to lose his job, but does deserve censure for “failing to promote confidence in the courts and for not avoiding the appearance of impropriety,” according to the AP.

“I can understand the appearance of impropriety, but I wasn’t trying to blame the victim,” Baugh told the AP. “I don’t think it’s appropriate to be removed.”

The office of Montana Attorney General Tim Fox has appealed Rambold’s sentence as illegal, but Rambold is free on probation until the appeal reaches the Montana Supreme Court. The AP obtained a private letter from Baugh to the Judicial Standards Commission during which he defended his sentence, even after trying to overturn it. He called the sentence “fair” and said Rambold exercised “morally good conduct” after he agreed to a deferred prosecution.

Auliea Hanlon, Morales’ mother, told the AP she doesn’t care if he is censured or removed because neither will bring her daughter back.

Follow Andrea Park on Twitter: @andreapark


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Hillary Clinton headed to Boston for women's leadership…

Former U.S. Senator and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is set to visit Massachusetts Wednesday amid continuing speculation about making another bid for the presidency in 2016.

Local

Boston Marathon: Marathoners ready to run, honor victims

Scores of runners will cross the Boston Marathon starting line in Hopkinton Monday and embark on a 26.2-mile journey to Boston in honor of the victims.

Local

MIT student, Rhodes scholar, dies

Eliana Hechter, a student at MIT and Harvard, died, her family said. The announcement was posted on MIT's website.

Local

Video: Car crashes into Cambridge store, man arrested…

A Cambridge man was arrested on gun and drug charges after crashing his car into a Massachusetts Avenue storefront early Saturday morning.

Television

'Game of Thrones' recap: Season 4, Episode 3,…

The problem with the devil you know is that ignoring them doesn’t mean they simply lie in wait. It allows them time to do things…

Television

Discovery cancels 'Everest Jump Live' special in wake…

The Discovery Channel has indicated it will not be moving forward with "Everest Jump Live," a planned special about mountain climber Joby Ogwyn's effort to…

The Word

'X-Men' director Bryan Singer drama continues

  News broke late last week that "X-Men" and "The Usual Suspects" director Bryan Singer is being sued by a man who said Singer molested…

The Word

Miley Cyrus cancels more dates, tweeting from hospital

Miley Cyrus is reportedly so sick that she's had to postpone more tour dates. We know this because she has been sitting in a hospital…

NHL

NHL video highlights: Bruins smack down Red Wings…

NHL video highlights: Bruins smack down Red Wings in Game 2

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox defeat Orioles, 4-2

Brock Holt the difference in the Red Sox' win

NHL

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump…

NHL video highlights & analysis: Red Wings dump Bruins in Game 1

MLB

MLB video highlights: Orioles top Red Sox, 8-4…

John Lackey roughed up for second straight outing

Travel

Packing: The one thing you need in your…

A new survey that looks at the travel habits of 50,000 people around the world has revealed that Western and Asian globetrotters have different priorities…

Home

Is your chair making it hard to talk?

Ever wished there was an office chair that could make impromptu meetings and discussions more private? The Cristiana Wing Chair is an asymmetrical armchair which…

Travel

Live large at these luxury hotels

From Thai boxing lessons and macabre Dracula tours to the Australian Outback, the Four Seasons hotel chain launched a series of new travel packages this…

Parenting

4 things that every summer camp should have

Alan Saltz, director of the 92nd street Y program lists things that every summer camp should have.