Toddler Raped, But Her Attackers Shouldn't Be Punished

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sad teddy bearA toddler was raped, but as horrific as the thought is, those who raped her shouldn't be punished. You see, her attackers were just boys -- 7- and 9-year-old boys who shouldn't even know what rape is. Someone is to blame, but it's not them.

It happened in Memphis this past summer. The 2-year-old victim's brother, 5, saw it occurring and told his mom. Thank goodness he did. While the boys first blamed each other, they later admitted to the crime.

The boys are due in court today where prosecutors are recommending they be removed from their families' homes and placed in state custody for treatment, not punishment. They want to determine what these boys have been exposed to that would make them do this to another child. James Sanders, the attorney defending the 9-year-old boy, told the Memphis Commercial Appeal:

What happened to this victim is horrible, nobody is minimizing that. But my client has a lot of problems and needs some immediate help. Somebody's got to rescue this kid.

Someone has to rescue them all.

This is one of those stories that I recount through tears, because it's so awful and so unimaginable that such vile, evil things can happen to innocent children. And really, at this point, all three should still be innocent. Something has to be very, very wrong in one's life for a mind that young to be infected like this.

But as much as I don't want to blame these boys because of their age, where do we draw a line? Is there really an age at which one suddenly should be able to account for his tragic background, overcome what he's been exposed to, and now be able to stand up and do the right thing? Yes, we have to expect that, but we also have to expect that some won't be able to. It doesn't in any way make what the victim suffered any less horrifying or their actions justifiable in the least, it just make the whole situation more tragic.

Do you think these boys should be punished?


Image via davedehetre/Flickr

crime, in the news, toddler health, safety

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Gina James

unfortunately the truth is that by 9yrs old you have already learned right from wrong and this is just an indication of what this child has been taught. It seems cruel but even with help now this child well both  boys are doomed.  Memories and tragedies don't just go away. I pray that they get the help and love they deserve. As for the parents they ought to be tortured themselves and locked up for their remaining years. Just because they are a menace to society. Children are innocent and they only learn by example.. So the parents need to realize that every thing they do is being absorbed by their children.

Steve Burke Jr.

screw that let those little demons suffer they should pay if a kid or adult raped my daughter i would break there bones and doll rag them to there parents then beat up the parent so bad that they cant work ever again this world is going to hell obviously there is no justice just let the bad kids and adults go unpunsished that is wrong those kids need to learn there is consequences to there actions and punsihment for there crimes i had to learn when i was little stealing is bad so why wont they learn when what they did is worse

bkwrmem bkwrmem

i agree with stacy if they knew to blame each other they knew it was wrong. they need to be punished for what they did to that little girl. they need to be treated too.i feel that with their ages they need help but that doesn't mean they shouldn't get punished for it to give the little girl justice. 

Dogkids Dogkids

angryI think they should be punished and treated. The parents should also be held responsible because if it goes on again it could lid to trouble in the future.

Lucille Blanchard

Any child thinking they are about to get in trouble will say the other did it, that doesn't mean they knew what they were doing was wrong. They had to have seen it happen, maybe siblings or parents. I think being in a hospital for treatment is punishment enough.

Mamaz... Mamazee73

Whip them, then take them from their homes and try to rehabilitate. But, whip them first. In public. My 7 and 9 year olds would never ever ever go there. And that little girl needs to *watch* them get whipped so she sees them be punished.

nonmember avatar Amanda

Many of the people that posted a comment in regards to this article are clearly uneducated about this issue. Having worked with child sex offenders for a while, in a therapeutic role, I have first hand knowledge of how a child can sexually act out on another child. To those of you who believe that these children should be punished.. this is illogical. They have almost certainly been the victims of sexual abuse from a parent or trusted adult. When this occurs at a very young age this messes with a child's perceptions of what are appropriate manifestations of touch, love, etc. Julie is correct when she states the best course for the boys it to get treatment. I think a lot of people forget that these are children, and while yes what they did was terrible, someone more than likely also did it to them. Because of this their developmental stages are fundamental (for lack of a better word) screwed up.

Laura Gerhardt

 The boys should be taken away from their families; treated and punished. I fear that these two could very well be on the road to serial rapist; serial killer.  Some parents look the other way and say "boys will be boys."   B.S.  The maltreatment of those much younger than themselves as well as animals start manifesting in  children at that age though their parents do everything to deny it. It's been written of in the backgrounds of  sociopaths. Not light reading mind you. Not to mention, don't know what they have seen or been exposed to or taught in their own famlies. They need intensive psychological treatment. But the fact that they initially blamed each other solely leads me to think that what they did: They new was wrong. Hope they can be turned around.

Carrie Johnson

At their age they knew that was wrong, yes they should be punished or they will think its ok and do it again....

Ed Jasper

Are you fucking serious? A RAPIST IS A RAPIST REGARDLESS OF THEIR AGE. Fuck You to who ever wrote this Bullshit. You are the problem with this world asshole bitch Julie Evans... cunt.

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