Montana Judge Facing Reprimand after Rape Case Debacle
HELENA, Mont. (AP) — The Montana Supreme Court today will publicly reprimand a judge who gave a lenient sentence to a former teacher for raping a 14-year-old student.
The censure is a public declaration by the high court that a judge is guilty of misconduct. District Judge G. Todd Baugh of Billings gave Stacey Rambold just 30 days in prison after suggesting the victim also shared responsibility for the 2007 rape. The girl committed suicide before the case went to trial.
Baugh is scheduled to appear before the court in Helena, where one of the justices will read a prepared statement that says the censure is a "process basically to publicly reprimand them for their conduct bringing dishonor on their position and the court's judicial system."
Rambold was a 47-year-old business teacher at Billings Senior High School at the time of the rape. Under state law, children younger than 16 cannot consent to sexual intercourse.