Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Leerkamp's Plea Bargaining With Ex-Carmel Basketball Players Angers Victim's Family

Hamilton Co. Prosecutor Sonia Leerkamp strikes again with yet another controversial plea bargain deal in the case of four former Carmel High School senior basketball players allegedly sexually assaulting a freshman teammate by forcibly penetrating his anus through his shorts with their fingers on multiple occasions. Leerkamp recently allowed Scott Laskowski, who was 19 at the time he allegedly assaulted the freshman member of the team, plead to a misdemeanor charge of criminal assault. Leerkamp dropped other charges against Laskowski, who was eligible under the plea agreement for diversion. Today comes news Leerkamp has allowed another one of the former basketball players charged in the incidents, Oscar Falodun, to plead to a similar single charge as with Laskowski. This plea deal has particularly angered the victim's family because Falodun is pleading to assaulting another victim who chose not to pursue criminal charges against the alleged perps. "This jurisdiction has successfully used legal speak to dismiss my son and his experience," the teen's father said. "This is not about the truth anymore. It's about maintaining the pristine image of Carmel." The victim's attorney, Rober Turner, lashed out at Leerkamp according to WRTV. "I don't know what she is, but she's not a prosecutor," he said. "She's actually an insult to the criminal justice system."

I've reported before how Leerkamp similarly swept under the rug a serious sexual assault committed against a member of the Carmel High School swim team several years ago. In that case, Leerkamp suggested the swimmer, who she said suffered from a learning disability, was often picked on by his fellow teammates but she didn't believe he had actually been sexually assaulted. In the case involving the basketball players, a CPS report prepared by state child welfare investigators found the victim had been sexually assaulted by his fellow teammates but Leerkamp just saw it as simple horseplay that got out of control.

I ran across a case of a Fresno high school wrestler being criminally charged for performing a commonly-used wrestling maneuver on a fellow wrestling team member during practice known as a butt drag. The victim claimed his teammate anally penetrated him while performing the move. The 17-year-old Preston Hill was charged with sexual assault. The butt drag is a legal move, but coaches say they don't actually instruct wrestlers to penetrate the opponent during the maneuver, although that seems to be the common result in many instances. Below is a video of this story, as well as a YouTube clip which shows the maneaver being utilized during wrestling matches in a humorous fashion. The Carmel basketball players are lucky they have a lenient prosecutor like Leerkamp who just doesn't see the obvious.


Indy4U2C said...

I do not know how Leerkamp can sleep knowing that she is allowing violent sex offenders off of a horrific crime, like they flipped a towel a little too hard at someone.

The plea is morally corrupt.

artfuggins said...

The public should be aware by now that perverted behavior goes unpunished in Hamilton County and it must be considered normal. Glad I don't live there.

This,too, will end up in Federal Courts.

Paul K. Ogden said...

I'm just glad that I didn't join the wrestling team in high school.

Jonny Q said...

Looks like it is not ending with just Basketball Players...I wonder what Leerkamp will do here.