American Injustice: 60 Days For Child Rape

This is a partial transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," August 23, 2004 that has been edited for clarity.

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BILL O'REILLY, HOST: The outrageous sentences for violent criminals. Last night this man, 26-year-old Anthony Robinson (search), got out of jail after serving just 60 days for second-degree rape and sodomy of his 12-year-old cousin. The man who gave that outrageous sentence is Alabama Judge John Bush (search), who would not talk with us. So we went to him.


JOHN BUSH, JUDGE, ALABAMA STATE CIRCUIT COURT: What's been reported on “The O’Reilly Factor” is false. You all know it's false. I did not sentence a man to 60 days in jail for forcibly raping a 12-year-old child. If you want to know the truth, the truth is available.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you have anything you want to say to the mother? Do you think you owe her an explanation, judge?

BUSH: That's it. That's it...


O'REILLY: Joining us now from Montgomery, Ala. is the 12-year-old rape victim's mother, Mary Weatherly. And here in the studio, Fox News senior judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano (search).

Ms. Weatherly, we'll begin with you. You still have not gotten any explanation from this judge or anyone else about why this rapist, the guy who raped your daughter, 12-years-old, only got 60 days, have you?


O'REILLY: And what happened yesterday when this guy got out of prison?

WEATHERLY: OK, he was scheduled to get out on today and I had to call and find out on my own. Nobody told me, nobody called me, nobody let me know from the county nor the city that he was getting out. And on yesterday, both of my daughters were on the way to the store to get some sodas and they spotted him at my mom's house and they ran all the way back home because it frightened them.

O'REILLY: So they saw him. They actually saw...

WEATHERLY: They saw him.

O'REILLY: Now, what did that do to the little girl?

WEATHERLY: It upset her very much. She came back home and went in her room, and she said, "I just can't deal with it. I can't deal with it."

O'REILLY: Now, last time we had you on the program, you said she was and continues to have psychological problems. Is that getting any better?

WEATHERLY: No. No, she has nightmares and she still has a problem adjusting with her friends. And she just likes to hang around in her room.

O'REILLY: All right, so nobody told you the man was going to be released yesterday, on Sunday.


O'REILLY: Judge Bush... or nobody's explained why the light sentence.


O'REILLY: All right, Ms. Weatherly, we're going to stay on the case, and we really appreciate it. Now, Judge, I want to just ask you — this is totally outrageous and I think the key word in that judge's statement was forcible rape. It looks to me like he's implying this was a consensual crime and that's why it was a soft sentence.

ANDREW NAPOLITANO, FOX NEWS SENIOR JUDICIAL ANALYST: You know, the legislature of Alabama has decided that at age 12, you are incapable of consenting. The harm visited on a 12-year-old victim and the harm visited on society and the harm visited on society by letting this guy go after 60 days is virtually incalculable. I read the transcript of what the judge said at the sentencing. He gave no reasons for the sentence. Now, he sentenced him to 10 years and suspended all but 60 days and didn't say why.

O'REILLY: But he told us — you heard him say, "Well, we're wrong..." Number one: we're not wrong. We're reporting this accurately, correct?

NAPOLITANO: Yes, we read the transcript.

O'REILLY: OK. And number two: he says it's all there. Well, if we read it like you did, there's nothing there and Ms. Weatherly certainly doesn't know what happened.

NAPOLITANO: It must be a strange system. In the federal system...

O'REILLY: No, it's him. It's him.

NAPOLITANO: In virtually every state, you have to give reasons for the...

O'REILLY: Judge, it's not the system. It's him. We had a camera in front of him. He could have said, "I gave him 60 days because of this."


O'REILLY: This is what I gave.

NAPOLITANO: There is not this, as you articulated.

O'REILLY: Now, you know what this is about? This is about Ms. Weatherly and her little daughter not having any power at all. If this was a rich white person, that judge wouldn't be able to get away with that.

NAPOLITANO: You are exactly correct and that should not be the case in this system. Justice should not be dependent upon whether or not the victim has political power in this community.

O'REILLY: That's right. These people are powerless, they don't have any money and this judge thinks he can walk around and do... Now, can anything be done against this guy? He's an elected guy.

NAPOLITANO: He is elected. He can only be impeached if he commits a crime himself. He can be...

O'REILLY: But nobody can do anything.

NAPOLITANO: He can be tossed out of office when he's up for reelection in four years, but this will have to be tolerated in the interim. Now, he has a reputation of being a heavy sentencer.

O'REILLY: Yeah, I don't care about the reputation. This is so bad. And this guy, he can walk near this woman. There's no court order that he has to stay away, right?

NAPOLITANO: I read the conditions of parole. The first condition always is no contact with the victim. It wasn't there. The judge didn't say it. This guy can go and have sex with that victim again tonight if he wants to as far as that judge is concerned.

O'REILLY: All right. Well, this Judge Bush owes everybody in this country, particularly Ms. Weatherly, an explanation. Judge, thanks very much.

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