Judge says rape victim didn’t put up a fight!
An Orange County Superior Court judge was publicly admonished Thursday, Dec. 13 for comments that breached judicial ethics and cast biases over a rape case.
The Commission on Judicial Performance censured Newport Beach-based judge Derek G. Johnson, who said a rape victim “didn’t put up a fight” and whose circumstances were “an insult” to other rape victims.
In the 2008 sentencing, Metin Gurel, was charged with rape, forcible oral copulation, domestic battery, stalking and criminal threats with the use of a deadly weapon.
Johnson denied the prosecution’s request for a 16-year prison term.
On the day of the rape, the prosecution said Gurel beat the victim’s breast with a metal baton and threatened to maim her face and vagina with a heated screwdriver.
Johnson said the case was “worth six years.”
As a former District Attorney in a sexual assault unit, Johnson says he is “not a gynecologist,” however he “knows something about sexual assault,” asserting that “if someone doesn’t want to have sexual intercourse, the body shuts down.”
Johnson, who said he found the case to be “technical” rather than a “real live criminal case” still sits on the bench.
The judge’s assertion that because the victim “didn’t put up a fight” she was “an insult to victims of rape,” is inconsistent with California law, which since 1980 has not required proof that a rape victim resists.
The commission concluded that Johnson’s remarks reflect “outdated, biased and insensitive views about sexual assault victims” that diminish public confidence in the judiciary.
In an apology to the commission, Johnson said his comments were an inappropriate result of frustrations with the prosecutor.
The state agency, who said they had not heard of Johnson’s comments until May 2012, voted 10 to 0 to impose public admonishment.