Thursday, March 17, 2022
In a series of tweets, U.S. Senator Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) outlined Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s alarming sentencing leniency for sex criminals, especially for those preying on children.
Thursday, March 17, 2022
I’ve been researching the record of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, reading her opinions, articles, interviews and speeches. I’ve noticed an alarming pattern when it comes to Judge Jackson’s treatment of sex offenders, especially those preying on children.
Judge Jackson has a pattern of letting child porn offenders off the hook for their appalling crimes, both as a judge and as a policymaker. She’s been advocating for it since law school. This goes beyond “soft on crime.” I’m concerned that this a record that endangers our children
As far back as her time in law school, Judge Jackson has questioned making convicts register as sex offenders – saying it leads to “stigmatization and ostracism.” She’s suggested public policy is driven by a “climate of fear, hatred & revenge” against sex offenders
In the current climate of fear, hatred, and revenge associated with the release of convicted sex criminals, courts must be especially attentive to legislative enactments that “use[ ] public health and safety rhetoric to justify procedures that are, in essence, punishment and detention.”3° Judges should abandon the prevention/punishment analyses that rely on legislative intent, that routinely apply the Kennedy factors, and that assess the “excessiveness” of a sex offender statute’s punitive effects in favor of a more principled approach to characterization. Although “[a precise] analytical solution is almost impossible to construct,”131 this Note suggests that such a principled approach involves assessing the impact of sex offender statutes and deeming the laws “punitive” to the extent that they operate to deprive sex criminals of a legal right in a manner that primarily has retributive or general- deterrent effects.
Judge Jackson has also questioned sending dangerous sex offenders to civil commitment. We have a civil commitment law in Missouri, and it protects children.
It gets worse. As a member of the U.S. Sentencing Commission, Judge Jackson advocated for drastic change in how the law treats sex offenders by eliminating the existing mandatory minimum sentences for child porn
Judge Jackson has said that some people who possess child porn “are in this for either the collection, or the people who are loners and find status in their participation in the community.” What community would that be? The community of child exploiters?
sexually motivated. So the people who are in this for either the collection, or the people who are loners and find status in their participation in the community, but would be categorized as nonsexually motivated, how many are we talking about?
Judge Jackson has opined there may be a type of “less- serious child pornography offender” whose motivation is not sexual but “is the challenge, or to use the technology.” A “less-serious” child porn offender?
10 And so I’m wondering whether you could say
11 that there is a — that there could be a less-serious
12 child pornography offender who is engaging in the
13 type of conduct in the group experience level because
14 their motivation is the challenge, or to use the
15 technology? They’re very sophisticated
16 technologically, but they aren’t necessarily that
17 interested in the child pornography piece of it?
In her time on the U.S. Sentencing Commission, Judge Jackson said she “mistakingly assumed that child pornography offenders are pedophiles” and she wanted “to understand this category of nonpedophiles who obtain child pornography.”
2 VICE CHAIR JACKSON: I had mistakenly
3 assumed that child pornography offenders are
4 pedophiles. So I’m trying to understand this
5 category of nonpedophiles who obtain child
6 pornography. And are those the people who you are
7 saying are the nonsexually motivated offenders?
B MS. McCARTHY: Um-hmm.
9 VICE CHAIR JACKSON: Do I have that right?
On the federal bench, Judge Jackson put her troubling views into action. In every single child porn case for which we can find records, Judge Jackson deviated from the federal sentencing guidelines in favor of child porn offenders.
In the case of United States v. Hawkins, the sex offender had multiple images of child porn. He was over 18. The Sentencing Guidelines called for a sentence of up to 10 years. Judge Jackson sentenced the perpetrator to only 3 months in prison. Three months.
In United States v. Stewart, the criminal possessed thousands of images of child porn and also hoped to travel across state lines to abuse a 9-year-old girl. The Guidelines called for a sentence of 97-121 months. Judge Jackson sentenced the criminal to just 57 months.
In United States v. Cooper, in which the criminal had more than 600 images and videos and posted many on a public blog, the Guidelines called for a sentence of 151-188 months. Judge Jackson settled on 60 months, the lowest possible sentence allowed by law.
In United States v. Chazin, the offender had 48 files of child porn, which he had accessed over a period of years. The Guidelines recommended 78-97 months. Judge Jackson gave him 28.
In United States v. Downs, the perp posted multiple images to an anonymous instant messaging app, including an image of a child under the age of 5. The Guidelines recommended 70-87 months. Judge Jackson gave him the lowest sentence allowed by law, 60 months.
In United States v. Sears, the sex offender distributed more than 102 child porn videos He also sent lewd pictures of his own 10-year-old daughter. The Guidelines recommended 97-121 months in prison. Judge Jackson gave him 71 months.
In United States v Savage, the sex offender was convicted of travel with intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct, and also admitted to transporting child porn. The Guidelines recommended 46-57 months. Judge Jackson gave him 37.
This is a disturbing record for any judge, but especially one nominated to the highest court in the land. Protecting the most vulnerable shouldn’t be up for debate. Sending child predators to jail shouldn’t be controversial.
So far, the Sentencing Commission has refused to turn over all Judge Jackson’s records from her time there. In light of what we have learned, this stonewalling must end. We must get access to all relevant records.