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Matthew Limon is a young man who has been diagnosed in the intellectual range between “borderline intellectual functioning” and “mild mental retardation.
In February of 2000, Matthew and another male teenager were both students at the same co-ed residential school for developmentally disabled youth in Miami County, Kansas. A week after Matthew’s 18th birthday, Matthew performed consensual oral sex on the other teenager, who was nearly 15 years old – three years, one month and a few days younger than Matthew.
Kansas has a so-called “Romeo and Juliet” law (K.S.A. § 21-3522) that makes the penalty for statutory rape less severe when the case involves two teenagers.
The “Romeo and Juliet” law reads: “(a) Unlawful voluntary sexual relations is engaging in voluntary: (1) sexual intercourse; (2) sodomy; or (3) lewd fondling or touching with a child who is 14 years of age but less than 16 years of age and the offender is less than 19 years of age and less than four years of age older than the child and child and the offender are the only parties involved and are members of the opposite sex.”
Because the “Romeo and Juliet” law excludes gay people, Matthew was charged with criminal sodomy instead...
Matthew received a sentence of 17 years in prison, when a heterosexual teenager with the same record would serve a maximum of 15 months for the same offense. Unlike a heterosexual teenager, he also must register as a sex offender and undergo 60 months of post-release supervision.
On June 26, the Court decided Lawrence v. Texas and overturned Bowers v. Hardwick, striking down sodomy laws nationwide. The next day, the Supreme Court vacated the decision upholding Matthew’s conviction and sentence, and remanded his appeal for reconsideration in light of Lawrence v. Texas, which ruled that the government can’t have a different set of rules for gay people than it does for straight people. But the Kansas court's reconsideration is written as if Lawrence v. Texas never even happened."
In its Dec.2003 decision, the Court gave three explanations for sentencing gays so much more severely: that doing so will reduce the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, that doing so encourages "traditional sexual mores," and that doing so promotes procreation and marriage.
Selected Quotes from Justice Henry W. Green, Jr.’s Opinion:
"Throughout history, governments have extolled the virtues of procreation as a way to furnish new workers, soldiers, and other useful members of society. The survival of society requires a continuous replenishment of its members."
"When a child is born from a relationship between a minor and a young adult, the minor is often unable to financially support the newborn child. In many cases, the minor is still a dependent. As a result, the financial burden to support the newborn child properly falls to the young adult. Obviously, the young adult cannot furnish adequate financial support for the newborn child while he or she is incarcerated. The legislature could well have concluded that incarcerating the young adult parent for a long period would be counterproductive to the requirement that a parent has a duty to provide support to his or her minor child… On the other hand, same-sex relationships do not generally lead to unwanted pregnancies. As a result, the need to release the same-sex offender from incarceration is absent."
Justice Joseph Pierron, Jr.
"Carved in stone above the pillars in front of the United States Supreme Court building are the words ‘Equal Justice Under Law.’ In bronze letters on the north interior wall of the Kansas Judicial Center we read ‘Within These Walls The Balance Of Justice Weighs Equal.’ There are reasons why we remind ourselves so graphically of the importance of equal justice. Persons in power and authority have historically been tempted to discriminate against people they do not like or understand. If these personal and political dislikes become law and exceed the bounds of constitutionality, the courts have been given the duty to be the final protectors of our ideal of equality under the law. This blatantly discriminatory sentencing provision does not live up to American standards of equal justice."
Originally posted by T-B0
hahaha he deserves that
Originally posted by Gazrok
Can we say overkill? The purpose of prison is to rehabilitate....in this case, I think it's taking a kid who would ordinarilly be able to become a functioning member of society...and TURNING him into a criminal, after 17 years in jail... Then we let loose a 36 year old TRUE sex offender.... Oh yes...that's a BRILLIANT plan...
Originally posted by shoo
I am not gay but it looks like we have some old-fashioned stupidos around here who still feel uncomfortable with gays.
You know, it is those guys who watch a porn with lesbians later then. Retards.
Retarded. Back to topic. Looks very much like we have a retarded young boy and judge. He would probably get no sentence in Germany(*shock*).
Originally posted by Laxpla
I bet the boy would like the year in prision, if you know what I mean
Originally posted by theshadowknows
STFU. You work for the us government, you deserve a beatin' for that.IGNORED
Originally posted by groingrinder
We need to stop coddling criminals and do away with libraries, weight rooms, conjugal visits, and color cable televisions in prisons.