A Massachusetts student suspected of sexually assaulting two unconscious classmates will not serve jail time or have to register as a sex offender, receiving probation for what his attorney called “a mistake.”
David Becker, 18, was charged with two counts of rape and one count of indecent assault after he allegedly penetrated two 18-year-old girls with his finger while they were unconscious, according to court documents viewed by MassLive.com.
The two East Longmeadow High School seniors were intoxicated when they fell asleep in a bed at a party at a classmate’s house party and allegedly woke to Becker sexually assaulting them on April 2.
Allegations of what occurred that night made their way around the school, eventually catching the attention of a school resource officer and then the police.
Becker denied touching one of the victims and said he thought that what he did to the other young woman was OK because she did not stop him, a police report obtained by WWLP said.
One of the victims told cops that she heard Becker had assaulted other girls in the past and was referred to as “David the Rapist,” MassLive.com wrote.
Thomas Rooke, Becker’s attorney, said both allegations were false. He also noted his client was a three-sport athlete, did community service and wants to continue his education.
Though prosecutors recommended two years in prison after charging him with rape, Becker received two years’ probation.
He must remain drug and alcohol free, submit to evaluation for sex offender treatment and stay away from the two young women.
Becker can serve out the terms of probation in Ohio, where he wrote on his now-deleted Facebook he planned to attend college.
The University of Dayton, where Becker listed as the school he planned to attend, tweeteed on Monday: “David Becker will not be attending the University of Dayton as a student this year.”
Becker is also not required to register as a sex offender.
“We all made mistakes when we were 17, 18, 19 years old, and we shouldn’t be branded for life with a felony offense and branded a sex offender,” Rooke said. “Putting this kid in jail for two years would have destroyed this kid’s life.”
Many were outraged to learn of Becker’s sentence, taking to social media to vent their frustrations at the perceived leniency afforded to young men accused of sexual assault.
“Of course, we wouldn’t want his youthful mistake to haunt him for the rest of his life like, yanno(sic), his F****** VICTIMS,” one person wrote on Facebook.
“This crap makes me want to scream,” another person wrote. “How are there so many judges that think rape isn’t a big deal?!”
Another posted: “Let’s introduce yet another rapist to the world. It seems people (kids, and judges alike) have learned little from Brock Turner. More raping of drunk girls. More ‘privilege acquittals.’”
Turner, a former Stanford student and athlete, was sentenced to six months in June for sexually assaulting a woman behind a dumpster. He had faced a minimum of two years for the three felonies he was convicted of, but Santa Clara County Judge Aaron Persky cited his youth and lack of a criminal record in his considerably light sentence.
Persky, who continues to face a slew of criticism for the lenient sentence handed down to Turner, recused himself last week from making his first major decision in another sex case, filing a ruling that he saw publicity about a child pornography case that would compromise his impartiality, Mercury News reported.