Brock Turner sex assault victim Chanel Miller says she was 'shocked' by short sentence
The woman who was sexually assaulted by former Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner said she was “shocked” when she learned he had been sentenced to only six months in jail during a TV interview that aired Sunday.
Chanel Miller, who earlier this month revealed her identity after being known for years as “Emily Doe,” said she was appalled by Judge Aaron Persky’s light sentence handed down in March 2016.
“I was in shock,” Miller told CBS’ “60 Minutes.”
“There are young men, particularly young men of color, serving longer sentences for non-violent crimes, for having a teenie-weenie bit of marijuana in their pockets,” she said. “And he’s just been convicted of three felonies. And he’s gonna serve one month for each felony. How can you explain that to me?”
Turner faced a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison after being convicted of three felony counts of sexual assault for the January 2015 rape. The former athlete’s sentence was later reduced due to good behavior and was subsequently released after serving 90 days.
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Miller also recalled learning from news articles about the details of her rape, that occurred while she was passed out outside a fraternity party.
“It was surreal having the news broken to me by the Internet,” Miller said. “I was alone, sitting at my desk, surrounded by co-workers, reading about how I was stripped and then penetrated and discarded in a bed of pine needles behind a dumpster.”
She also pushed back against public scrutiny, including people commenting online that she was to blame for her own assault because she had been drinking.
“Rape is not a punishment for getting drunk,” Miller said. “And we have this really sick mindset in our culture as if you deserve rape if you drink to excess.”
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“You deserve a hangover, a really bad hangover, but you don’t deserve to have somebody insert their body parts inside of you,” she added.
Miller also met Peter Jonsson and Carl Arndt, the two Swedish graduate students who intervened to stop the assault and chased down Turner during Sunday night’s program.
“The same night the assault happened, a miracle also happened, which was that I was saved,” Miller said. “And thinking of the two Swedes who knew to do the right thing, and who wanted me really to be OK, always gave me hope.”
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“They changed the story,” Miller added. “They changed the entire trajectory of my life.”
Miller is set to release a memoir on Tuesday titled “Know My Name” about her sexual assault experience and its aftermath.