DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – The man convicted and sentenced for raping a teenage classmate was back in court on Thursday morning. While the Dallas case had fueled outrage across the nation, a new judge assigned to the case may have lessened the widespread anger by modifying the original punishment.
The victim was raped at a Dallas high school in October 2011, and 20-year-old Sir Young confessed to the crime. But the judge’s sentence left the victim, her family and prosecutors extremely upset. Judge Jeanine Howard ordered Young to serve five years probation. He is also now required to register as a sex offender, but the judge did not impose any of the typical restrictions.
Howard also ordered Young to community service at a rape crisis center in Dallas, but they refused his help.
The events that followed only further fueled a nationwide firestorm.
In an interview with the Dallas Morning News, Howard said that the young girl was not a virgin and was not really the victim that she claimed to be. The victim’s mother said that Howard made incorrect public statements, which hurt the family even more than the probation sentence. After handing down that sentence, Howard later recused herself amid a storm of criticism.
CBS 11 News sat down for an interview with the victim. “To me, this sends the message that, basically, you can come forward as you’re supposed to and tell the truth and say what happened to you, and nothing’s going to happen,” she said.
“If we have victims who are afraid to come forward, we have offenders and rapists still on the street,” explained Dallas County District Attorney’s Office administrative chief Andrea Moseley.
The Dallas County District Attorney’s Office asked for the new hearing with a new judge on Thursday. Judge Carter Thompson swiftly imposed a number of restrictions on the original probation sentence for Young, falling in line with the prosecution’s requests. Thompson looked directly at Young during the hearing and told him that he must live up to every condition of the probation.
Thompson told Young, “If you miss a probation meeting, I’m going to find out about it. If you test positive for drugs, I’m going to find out about it. If you’re in a gang, I’m going to find out about it. If you get arrested again, I’m going to find out about it.”
Defense attorney Scottie Allen was critical of the new move. “This is highly unusual to now make these requests, when they could have made the request initially and had those requests denied bt the initial judge,” said Allen.
Prosecutors said that Thompson accomplished what the first judge failed to do. “Your previous court gave you a second chance,” Thompson told Young. “Don’t expect a third chance from this court.”
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