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USA Swimming Bans Brock Turner for Life

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The U.S. governing body for the sport of swimming on Friday banned ex-Stanford University swimmer Brock Turner, whose six-month jail sentence for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman has stirred widespread outrage.

"Brock Turner's membership with USA Swimming expired at the end of the calendar year 2014 and he was not a member at the time of his crime or since then," USA Swimming spokesman Scott Leightman said. "As a result, USA Swimming doesn't have any jurisdiction over Brock Turner."

Turner, 20, was convicted in March of the intent to commit rape of an intoxicated/unconscious person, penetration of an intoxicated person and penetration of an unconscious person.

Prosecutors had asked that Turner be sentenced to six years in prison for the January 2015 assault.

But Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky said Turner's age and lack of criminal history made a six-month jail sentence with probation more appropriate.

Turner also has to register as a sex offender.

The outcry over a sentence seen as lenient by many was compounded by widely circulated letters to the judge from the victim and Turner's father.

 

A Change.org petition to recall Persky, a possibility in California, where judges are elected, has been signed by more than 1 million people by Friday morning.

"Judge Persky failed to see that the fact that Brock Turner is a white male star athlete at a prestigious university does not entitle him to leniency," the petition read. "He also failed to send the message that sexual assault is against the law regardless of social class, race, gender or other factors. Please help rectify this travesty to justice."

Stanford University released a statement Monday deflecting criticism of its handling of the case. The school did "everything within its power to assure that justice was served," from immediately investigating the case to referring it to the Santa Clara County district attorney's office for prosecution, the statement said.