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Toronto Star story
Legal experts on both sides of the border are scratching their heads after a U.S. judge told a Buffalo teacher convicted of having sex with a 15-year-old girl he could avoid a one-year jail sentence by accepting a three-year exile to Canada.
The baffling case involves Malcolm Watson, a 35-year-old U.S. citizen who lives in Fort Erie, Ont., with his Canadian wife and three children, but who had been commuting to teach at the Buffalo Seminary, a private all-girls school in the Buffalo area.
In New York state the age of consent for male-female sex is 17.
Watson, a popular English teacher at the prep school, which has 174 girls in Grades 9 to 12, pleaded guilty to having sex with a 15-year-old female student in a parked car.
The Buffalo News reported that Watson was fired from his job in April, after being suspended a month earlier for ignoring a previous warning to stay away from the student.
Originally posted by chissler
The girl was 15, the intercourse was in the backseat of a car. She is not capable of consenting to the sex, so wouldn't that indicate rape?
I am confused on so many levels with this case.
Posted by masqua
Age of consent in NYS is 17 and 14 in Canada. My guess is that Harper will use this case to raise the age of consent here, as he has already promised. This is at least one thing I agree with him on.
Toronto — Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty wants Ottawa to fight a decision by a U.S. judge to sentence a convicted sex offender to probation in Canada
Mr. McGuinty calls it a bad precedent and wants Mr. Watson, 35, to serve his time in the U.S.
He says he doesn't want Ontario to become a dumping ground for American sex offenders.
Originally posted by chissler
A Canadian politician making a stand? Wow this Harper Effect is trickling down through the different levels of government isn't it.
Good to see McGuinty make this stand though.
I would hope to see the judge be put in front of the cameras to defend his decision and allow the public to understand why he came to this. Dumping this man onto Ontario and Canada, in my opinion, opens him up to criticism and the responsibility of defending his actions.
Originally posted by intrepid
From what I've read, there are plenty of Americans that are questioning this tools actions as well. You may just get your wish.
Under the agreement accepted Monday by a Cheektowaga County court, Watson pleaded guilty to endangering the welfare of a child and sexual abuse in the third degree - charges that carry a maximum penalty of one year and 90 days jail, respectively.
Initial media reports from the U.S. that said Watson was convicted of having sex with the girl were incorrect, Clark added.
"He was never charged with intercourse. He never pleaded to intercourse. He never admitted to intercourse and she never claimed intercourse."