READ: Brock Turner’s Full Statement to Judge Aaron Persky

brock turner mugshot, brock turner photos

Brock Turner’s mugshot from the night of his arrest in January 2015. (Stanford University)

Convicted rapist and former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner repeatedly blamed alcohol and claimed his sexual assault of a 22-year-old woman was a consensual encounter in his letter to the judge who sentenced him.

The victim said she never consented and could not remember anything that happened the night of the rape in January 2015, because she was intoxicated. The rape was interrupted by two Stanford graduate students who said the victim was unconscious and not moving while Turner assaulted her. Turner was convicted of three felonies by a jury in March.

In his 11-page statement, which you can read in full at the bottom of this article, Turner said he was getting sick because of the amount of alcohol he drank when he was approached by the two students who intervened. He said he was walking away, leaving the half-naked victim alone, to find a place to throw up when he was approached. He said he ran away from them because he was scared.

Turner also claimed that the victim had consented (The description of the incident by Turner is graphic):

I idiotically rationalized that since we had been making out where each of us fell to the ground, that it would be a good idea to take things a step further since we were just in the heat of the moment at that location. I pull away from kissing her and whisper in her ear if she wanted me to finger her. She responds to me and acknowledges what I said with saying, “Yeah.” Having heard her response, I decide to take her underwear off thinking that since it was established that I would finger her, the only way of accomplishing this was to pull down her underwear.

The victim wrote a powerful statement about how Turner destroyed her life by raping her. You can read her statement here.

“Unfortunately, after reading the defendant’s statement, I am severely disappointed and feel that he has failed to exhibit sincere remorse or responsibility for his conduct. I fully respected his right to a trial, but even after twelve jurors unanimously convicted him guilty of three felonies, all he has admitted to doing is ingesting alcohol,” she wrote. “Someone who cannot take full accountability for his actions does not deserve a mitigating sentence. It is deeply offensive that he would try and dilute rape with a suggestion of promiscuity. By definition rape is the absence of promiscuity, rape is the absence of consent, and it perturbs me deeply that he can’t even see that distinction.”

Judge Aaron Persky followed the recommendation of the state probation department, sentencing Turner to six months in jail, of which he is only expected to serve three months for good behavior. He was also sentenced to three years of probation and will have to register as a sex offender for life.

Turner said in the letter that before college he had “never really experienced celebrating or partying that involved alcohol” because he came from a small Ohio town. He said was charged with being a minor in possession of alcohol during one Saturday of drinking with friends, but didn’t learn his lesson. He said he thought drinking was “essential” to being a college student. He says he learned from watching others at parties that alcohol led to “intimate encounters” between men and women:

During this discovery of what I thought was a college lifestyle, I also had the opportunity to witness on multiple occasions people being intimate at parties that involved alcohol. I remember attending social gatherings with the swim team where these things were not only accepted but almost encouraged for the freshman (sic) to experience. Over the course of a couple months at school, I grew more accepting of these characteristics and began think of it as normal behavior for one to meet people of the opposite sex at parties that involved drinking. The swim team set no limits on partying and drinking and I saw the guys take full advantage of these circumstances, while I was shown to do the same. I witnessed countless times the guys that I looked up to go to parties, meet girls, and take the girl that they had just met back with him.

Turner said in his letter he wishes he wasn’t a good swimmer:

I am completely consumed by my poor judgement and ill thought actions. There isn’t a second that has gone by where I haven’t regretted the course of events I took on January 17th/18th. My shell and core of who I am as a person is forever broken from this. I am a changed person. At this point in my life, I never want to have a drop of alcohol again. I never want to attend a social gathering that involves alcohol or any situation where people make decisions based on the substances they have consumed. I never want to experience being in a position where it will have a negative impact on my life or someone else’s ever again. I’ve lost two jobs solely based on the reporting of my case. I wish I never was good at swimming or had the opportunity to attend Stanford, so maybe the newspapers wouldn’t want to write stories about me.

You can read the full statement written by Turner below (warning, some of the material in the letter is graphic). If you are on mobile, scroll past the PDF embed to read the statement:

The day of January 17th, 2015, started out like most of my days at school were spent, by getting up and going to swim practice. Having spent the past four months on campus living around my friends who were essentially all on the swim team, I had plans to spend time with them later that day. Coming from a small town in Ohio, I had never really experienced celebrating or partying that involved alcohol. However, when I came to school in California, it had become what I expected when spending a Saturday with friends. I began to champion the idea of relieving the stress of school and swimming by consuming alcohol on weekends with people. On one instance of a Saturday of drinking, I was walking to one of the home football games with my recently found friends on the swim team. I thought things were going great, I was having a beer with them while walking to the game and experiencing what were supposedly “the best years of my life.” I thought it was cool to be able to have a beer with friends while walking to a football game. However, the day ended by having been charged with a minor in possession for drinking alcohol. This should of opened myself to the dangers of drinking. I regrettably brushed off the incident as a mistake, but not a mistake that should change my behavior with drinking and being around the environment that enables it. Having spent most of my time around people that consumed alcohol daily, I thought is was fundamental to being in college and living like a college student. Even though I had been charged with a crime, it didn’t deter me from still drinking because I carelessly thought that it was at the core essentials of being a college student and I shouldn’t let one incident change my idea of what being in college meant. During this discovery of what I thought was a college lifestyle, I also had the opportunity to witness on multiple occasions people being intimate at parties that involved alcohol. I remember attending social gatherings with the swim team where these things were not only accepted but almost encouraged for the freshman to experience. Over the course of a couple months at school, I grew more accepting of these characteristics and began to think of it as normal behavior for one to meet people of the opposite sex at parties that involved drinking. The swim team set no limits on partying or drinking and I saw the guys take full advantage of these circumstances, while I was shown to do the same. I witnessed countless times the guys that I looked up to go to parties, meet girls, and take the girl that they had just met back with them. The guys that I thought highly of would dance with girls while being intoxicated and encouraged me to participate in the party like they were. I was an inexperienced drinker and party-goer, so I just accepted these things that they showed me as normal. Living more than two thousand miles away from home, I looked to the guys on my swim team as family and tried to replicate their values in how they approached college life.

That’s why on January 17th, I was excited to attend a party that my friend, who was a freshman on the team at the time, was hosting at his dorm room. If I could go back and change what unfolded on the night of January 17th, I would do it in a heartbeat because I never meant to hurt anyone. I arrived at that party with two other friends of mine that were also swimmers. Once I was there, I began consuming alcohol in the form of beer while socializing with the people at the party. I had approximately five beers while I was in his room. I eventually drank two swigs of Fireball whiskey in addition to the beer that I had already drank. I felt comfortable and safe knowing that I was just one of many members on the swim team that were there. It felt as though my behavior with consuming alcohol was completely ordinary and what was accepted within my newfound family. Eventually, the party at my freshman classmate’s dorm got broken up by the RA’s around eleven o’clock due to the noise restrictions set by them. At this time I was with my friend [REDACTED], and about 8 other people. The people who weren’t freshman in the group were looking for other parties to venture to. In my short time spent at school, I had become familiar with the fact that people would usually try and head to fraternity parties after being at a more smaller party as the night got later. The night of January 17th was no exception to this fact. As I was travelling with this small group that originated from my friend’s dorm party he had just held, someone verbalized that the fraternity Kappa Alpha was holding a party that we could attend. I didn’t hold an opinion one way or the other of where the group’s final destination should be. Over the course of a couple minutes, the majority of the people in the group decided to walk to the party at Kappa Alpha and I followed with them. I arrived at the frat party through the back entrance of the house. As I passed through the patio doors into the basement area of the house, I spotted my captain of the swim team playing a drinking game. I started talking with him while he was playing the game alongside another senior on the swim team. I was just hanging out at the party in the basement area, enjoying my time at the party with the guys I looked up to. Someone then decided to turn the lights off downstairs, which signaled for people to stop playing the drinking games and star dancing on top of the tables that they were being played upon. Hanging around my captain once this happened, he encouraged me to star having more fun. So taking his advice, I get a top one of the tables and began dancing. Eventually, myself and another girl that was dancing on the same table began dancing together. We grinded together, which means that I was behind her and both our hips were touching in a side to side motion in accordance with the beat of the song. After a couple songs, I get down and go outside to cool off and see what was happening on the patio area of the party. As I walk outside, I find [REDACTED], the friend who I walked to the party with, along with another one of my swim team friends talking. I go up to them and begin talking with them. After a period of time doing this, [REDACTED] finds a case of beer on the ground which he pointed out to me. [REDACTED] then hands me a beer and I start to drink it, while him and [REDACTED], the other friend who was with us, prepare to shotgun their beer. Before they do this, two girls are hanging around us and [REDACTED] asks them if they want any of the beer that they’re about to shotgun. They both accept the beer and join in with the three of us. [REDACTED] and the two girls all shotgun their beer of begin drinking it, while I sip on mine because I wasn’t planning on shotgunning the beer. After a period of time, I eventually find myself talking with one of the girls that [REDACTED] handed beer to and [REDACTED]. We were basically introducing ourselves, explaining that we went to school at the campus and that we were both on the swim team. She was explaining how she went to [REDACTED], and then that quipped [REDACTED] into talking about how he had a sibling who went there as well. I though me and her were enjoying each other’s company, when she got up close to me and said that she was astonished that I looked exactly like one of her friends at the school that she went to. I took this as a sign that she was flirting with me and after a period of more socializing, I find myself kissing her. We kissed for less than five seconds or so, until both our teeth hit each others’ and we both pull away. I remember that we both laughed about it that our teeth had hit and it was kind of awkward that I began to blush. She goes along with her friends somewhere and I head back inside the party to see if I could find anyone that I knew to hangout with. After a period of time of just hanging out inside the party and being on my phone, I see the other girl that was on the patio when [REDACTED] and I were talking and drinking beer. I go up to her and tell her that I liked her dancing. We started talking together since I thought we had hung out for some amount of time before. I asked her if she wanted to dance, so we began to dance together and eventually started kissing each other. I bring up the idea of her coming back to my dorm room and she agrees to accompany me back to there. We begin walking back to my room towards the path that would eventually lead up to my house. During this time, we walk down a slope in the direction towards the path that we were heading. The next thing I realize is that we were both on the ground laying next to each other because it seemed as though she lost her footing heading down the slope and I went down with her. We started laughing about it and I was just thinking of how much of a klutz I could be. I ask her if she was alright and she tells me that she thought she was. After this happened, we started kissing each other again on the ground on which we fell. When this stared to happen, the thought of making it back to my dorm left my head. I thought things were going fine with [REDACTED] and that I just existed in a reality where nothing can go wrong or nobody could think of what I was doing as wrong. Never did I question the fact of where [REDACTED] and I were and where we should have been. I naively assumed that is was accepted to be intimate with someone in a place that wasn’t my room. Negating all these factors, I bring up the though of sexual interaction with her. I idiotically rationalized that since we had been making out where each of us fell to the ground, that it would be a good idea to take things a step further since we were just in the heat of the moment at that location. I pull away from kissing her and whisper in her ear if she wanted me to finger her. She responds to me and acknowledges what I said with saying, “Yeah.” Having heard her response, I decide to take her underwear off thinking that since it was established that I would finger her, the only way of accomplishing this was to pull down her underwear. After doing so, I began to kiss her again and finger her until I thought she was satisfied with the sexual interaction that had taken place based on her moaning and the way in which she held onto me with her arms on my back. While this was occurring, I asked her if she was enjoying what I was doing, to which she gave me a positive response. I stopped the fingering and began to move my hips against the upward movement of her hips, while I kissed her neck and ear mostly. At no time did it ever occur to me, or did it ever seem that [REDACTED] was too drunk to know what we were doing. I would not have done anything against anyone’s will.

After a period of time of continuing these movements in coordination with her, the beer and alcohol that I consumed began to unsettle my stomach. I began to experience nausea and everything started to spin in my field of vision. I announced to [REDACTED] that I thought I was about to throw up because of the way my stomach was feeling to which she responds “oh, okay,” seemingly surprised by the fact that I felt that way. I proceed to get up from laying on the ground with her to all fours at first since my balance was still not easily being maintained. Eventually I get my feet underneath me and start walking down the slope to find an appropriate place to throw up. At this moment I realize that there is someone trying to get my attention that is quickly headed in my direction. I start walking away from the slope in which [REDACTED] and I just were to continue to seek out a location in which to throw up. As I proceeded to walk, the person that was trying to get my attention approached me even closer. During this time, he was speaking in some foreign language with someone else. All I could make out of what he was saying to me was something along the lines of “hey” or “what the f***.” Before I could even thing of a response as to what to say to him to try and appease whatever his concerns with me were, I find my arms being grabbed by him. This cause me to think that he was trying to fight with me or mess with me in someway and I had no idea why. Fear went through my body, which caused me to resist him in anyway I could. I broke his physical connection to my body and tried running away from him, soon finding myself on the ground with him holding my arms down and preventing me from ever getting up. I screamed out for help ten or fifteen times before I realized my shouting would be helpless since no one was coming to help me. I repeatedly tried to get him to talk about whatever his strife was, but he refused to do so. During my time of being restrained on the ground, I heard someone was going to call the police. I thought that it was good that the police were coming because I thought they would help me. Once the police arrived, I finally stood up until I heard that I would have to get back on the ground and put my hands behind my back. I was shocked to realize that it was me who they were arresting. I swear I never would have done any of this if [REDACTED] wasn’t willing. I haven’t done that at any time in my life and wouldn’t do it now.

I get taken back to the police station and put in a room with a wooden bench. I was told I couldn’t use the bathroom or have anything to eat or drink and should just start sleeping on the bench. None of the police were telling me what was happening to me until someone came in after they had taken my clothes and swabbed my body for some reason. He told me that I was being charged with rape and I immediately responded with complete and utter shock. He then said to me that he agreed that it was a hard thing to wake up to and I just thought are you kidding me? Then he told me that someone was going to come in and interview me. Eventually that person came and all I could think during that interview was that I never raped someone and would never even thing about doing that. I wish I would have forced myself at the time to remember every single minute detail that happened that night and express that. I wish I would have said that I know I didn’t run from [REDACTED], but did run from the guy that I was fearful of even if it was just a fight or flight reaction. I didn’t think what I didn’t say would be such as huge deal because I know I never raped anybody that night and that’s all that would matter. I thought that all I had to communicate was the truth — that in no way was I trying to rape anyone, in no way was I trying to harm anyone, and in no way was I trying to take advantage of anyone. However, at the end of the interview, the officer told me that they had probable cause to take me to jail and that’s where I would be going. I was in complete shock and disbelief during the entire process. I could only think of my family and getting in contact with them.

The night of January 17th changed my life and the lives of everyone involved forever. I can never go back to being the person I was before that day. I am no longer a swimmer, a student, a resident of California, or the product of the work that I put in to accomplish the goals that I set out in the first nineteen years of my life. Not only have I altered my life, but I’ve also changed [REDACTED] and her family’s life. I am the sole proprietor of what happened on the night that these people’s lives were changed forever. I would give anything to change what happened that night. I can never forgive myself for imposing trauma and pain on [REDACTED]. It debilitates me to think that my actions have caused her emotional and physical stress that is completely unwarranted and unfair. The thought of this is in my head every second of every day since this event has occurred. These ideas never leave my mind. During the day, I shake uncontrollably from the amount I torment myself by thinking about what has happened. I wish I had the ability to go back in time and never pick up a drink that night, let alone interact with [REDACTED]. I can barely hold a conversation with someone without having my mind drift into thinking these thoughts. They torture me. I go to sleep every night having been crippled by these thoughts to the point of exhaustion. I wake up having dreamt of these horrific events that I have caused. I am completely consumed by my poor judgement and ill thought actions. There isn’t a second that has gone by where I haven’t regretted the course of events I took on January 17th/18th. My shell and core of who I am as a person is forever broken from this. I am a changed person. At this point in my life, I never want to have a drop of alcohol again. I never want to attend a social gathering that involves alcohol or any situation where people make decisions based on the substances they have consumed. I never want to experience being in a position where it will have a negative impact on my life or someone else’s ever again. I’ve lost two jobs solely based on the reporting of my case. I wish I never was good at swimming or had the opportunity to attend Stanford, so maybe the newspapers wouldn’t want to write stories about me.

All I can do from these events moving forward is by proving to everyone who I really am as a person. I know that if I were to be placed on probation, I would be able to be a benefit to society for the rest of my life. I want to earn a college degree in any capacity that I am capable to do so. And in accomplishing this task, I can make the people around me and society better through the example I will set. I’ve been a goal oriented person since my start as a swimmer. I want to take what I can from who I was before this situation happened and use it to the best of my abilities moving forward. I know I can show people who were like me the dangers of assuming what college life can be like without thinking about the consequences one would potentially have to make if one were to make the same decisions that I made. I want to show that people’s lives can be destroyed by drinking and making poor decisions while doing so. One needs to recognize the influence that peer pressure and the attitude of having to fit in can have on someone. One decision has the potential to change your entire life. I know I can impact and change people’s attitudes towards the culture surrounded by binge drinking and sexual promiscuity that protrudes through what people think is at the core of being a college student. I want to demolish the assumption that drinking and partying are what make up a college lifestyle I made a mistake, I drank too much, and my decisions hurt someone. But I never ever meant to intentionally hurt [REDACTED]. My poor decision making and excessive drinking hurt someone that night and I wish I could just take it all back.

If I were to be placed on probation, I can positively say, without a single shred of doubt in my mind, that I would never have any problem with law enforcement. Before this happened, I never had any trouble with law enforcement and I plan on maintaining that. I’ve been shattered by the party culture and risk taking behavior that I briefly experienced in my four months at school. I’ve lost my chance to swim in the Olympics. I’ve lost my ability to obtain a Stanford degree. I’ve lost employment opportunity, my reputation and most of all, my life. These things force me to never want to put myself in a position where I have to sacrifice everything. I would make it my life’s mission to show everyone that I can contribute and be a positive influence on society from these events that have transpired. I will never put myself through an event where it will give someone the ability to question whether I really can be a betterment to society. I want no one, male or female, to have to experience the destructive consequences of making decisions while under the influence of alcohol. I want to be a voice of reason in a time where people’s attitudes and preconceived notions about partying and drinking have already been established. I want to let young people now, as I did not, that things can go from fun to ruined in just one evening.

54 Comments

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54 Comments

Anonymous

What the hell was this guy even doing at a college? His grammar and writing skills are atrocious, making him a moron as well as a rapist and a liar.

Anonymous

No rape occurred….he copped a feel…just like some 9th grader on a date…this is a railroad job by the lesbians.

Anonymous

I agree. Attempted rape? He was way overcharged.

Anonymous

Agree.. And I am a 20 something woman so I got the victims profile.

The turmoil the victim is feeling is caused by drinking/blacking out and not remembering what had happened. This is further intensified by reading about it EVERYWHERE.

The lesson of the story is to drink responsibly. It’s not ok to have sex with an unconscious person…but they were both young and intoxicated. Without further details highlighting their interactions before they were found – we cannot conclude it was RAPE.

Brock- Met her at the party, they made our, they consentually walked out to go to his dorm room. If she’s standing vertical, kissing and walking how on earth should he know she’s in black out/can’t remember state?! Let’s not forget he’s young and drunk too…not to the point of passing out but how would we know what his mental state is while drunk? They are both young and drunk here.

Everyone on the planet has had sex after a few drinks – it’s arguably how most dates go. The difference here is that both parties lack the maturity to understand their limits.

As a victim (if I was her) I would feel horrible waking up and being told I was found bottomless and sexually violated. I would want to never lose coherency again, I would want for this to never be mentioned. I would want privacy to work through this. I would not want to shame someone and forever alter their lives for events that I cannot remember!! That is what would haunt me.

As the person without memory in this equation, I would want to put it behind me and move on, knowing that I’ve altered someone’s life forever would also ride on my conscience forever.

Many people have woken up /there are skits and songs and tv shows about his – waking up with someone who you maybe don’t recall every detail of the night before. And maybe it’s not total consentual…but as adults, we have a responsibility to SPEAK UP and use our Words to say no, to know our limits and drink responsibly.

Anonymous

Your attitude is an example of the rape culture that needs to change. You’re blaming the victim. It doesn’t matter if she was drunk. She was unconscious with him on top of her. That’s rape.

Michelle mel

I’m sorry but that is some horseshit. You’re saying, how was she blackout drunk and still walking? You should look up the definition of blackout (memory loss) caused by alcohol. You can be blacked out but still functioning. Blackout can be where you are completely unconscious, but blackout can also be where you only remember the last 2 minutes and nothing else, which is why it seems like the person is functioning.
At any point where your judgment is impaired to the point of not being able to walk without falling YOU DO NOT KNOW WHAT YOU ARE SAYING.
If you had read the news, the woman was unconscious. Completely unconscious. He was humping her unmoving, unresponsive body. Now, if we are to go off your argument, can this woman say no? Actually physically say the word no? Doesn’t seem like it to me.
I am a twenty year old female as well, but this case and people like you disgust me.
You’re saying, oh it’s their fault for drinking too much.
Really?
Drinking too much? Is Brock turner an animal who relies on animalistic instincts, or is he a man who should know the difference between what is right or wrong?
It doesn’t matter how drunk you are, if the person is unresponsive, THEY CANNOT GIVE CONSENT NOR DENY CONSENT. You’re saying, oh she should have drank less. It’s not his fault for raping her, she should have drank less.
People like you is what is wrong with this world and what prevents women from moving forward in equality.

Anonymous

Multiple witnesses saw him sexually assault her. You’re disgusting, and most likely a rapist yourself if you think it’s fine to assault unconscious women.

Anonymous

no, he did it with her consent, she was blacking out(functioning but not remembering), but she was forgot, and under pressure of being embarassed, she try to save face, with false accusing him of rape.

Anonymous

Interesting theory and what’s your evidence to support it?

Anonymous

about the witnesses, they came when he about to throw up, they didn’t know what happened before that point, she could be already pass out when the two swedes came, and Turner didn’t know that(the woman pass out)

Anonymous

Yeap blame the lesbians you moron. Not one lesbian had anything to do with the event or the prosecution you imbecile.

Anonymous

That is what I think. Poor kid. This 23 female has all the hurt. She did not even remember what happened. She has figured not raped.

Anonymous

I agree totally and the woman she should retract her charges now. No one wants to see this guy go to prison for 30 years and have his life when it all she gonna do in 30 years to say how she really didn’t know what was going on when she accused him of rape.

chris

the definition of rape is “unlawful sexual intercourse or any other sexual penetration of the vagina, anus, or mouth of another person, with or without force, by a sex organ, other body part, or foreign object, without the consent of the victim. ” so by fingering her he would come under the any other sexual penetration. meaning rape did occurred and he was charged with what he did.

Anonymous

yes, it wasn’t rape, the woman just trying to save face, she should be ashamed for ruining his life forever, if only the two swedes didn’t came, nothing of this will happen, she won’t be embrassed, and his life won’t be ruined, she did it because she was under pressure

Madlammxx

He even said the reson it was consensual was because she gave him a back rub. A back rub. You idiots who think she ringed his life should go to hell. He did this to himself. He ruined HER life.

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