A New Jersey family court judge was reprimanded by an appeals court panel last month for refusing to try a 16-year-old boy accused of raping an intoxicated girl and sharing video of the alleged assault with friends as an adult because he was “from a good family,” and Eagle scout and attended an “excellent school,” reports said.
The 16-year-old boy identified only as G.M.C. in court documents allegedly raped a “visibly intoxicated” 16-year-old girl identified by the pseudonym “Mary” while the two were drunk at a pajama party in New Jersey, prosecutors said. The boy is accused of filming himself and sending the video out to friends for months after the assault.
“When your first time having sex is rape,” G.M.C. allegedly texted friends with the video days after the party. Several of the friends told investigators Mary’s body was drooping during the assault, at least one adding that her head was also banging against the wall, The Hill reported. It was not clear in court documents where in New Jersey the alleged assault took place.
The Monmouth County prosecutor’s office recommended in September 2017 that G.M.C. be tried as an adult, describing his actions as “both sophisticated and predatory.” But Judge James Troiano of Superior Court reportedly denied the waiver and scolded prosecutors for not explaining to the girl and her mother “the devastating effect” pressing charges would have on “G.M.C.’s life.”
“He is clearly a candidate for not just college but probably for a good college,” Troiano of Superior Court wrote. He added that the “young man comes from a good family who put him into an excellent school where he was doing extremely well.”
An appellate court reversed Troiano’s decision last month in a 14-page ruling only recently picked up by The New York Times and local affiliates. The panel sharply admonished the judge and warned against showing bias in sexual assault cases toward privileged teenagers, the Times reported.
“That the juvenile came from a good family and had good test scores we assume would not condemn the juveniles who do not come from good families and do not have good test scores from withstanding waiver application,” the panel wrote, according to The Huffington Post.