Leslie Rasmussen, drummer for Ohio-based band Good English and a friend of Turner’s, has come under fire for the letter many have criticized as insensitive.
“Brock is not a monster I don’t think it’s fair to base the fate of the next ten + years of his life on the decision of a girl who doesn’t remember anything but the amount she drank to press charges against him,” Rasmussen wrote, noting that she knew Turner in both elementary and high school.
“I am not blaming her directly for this, because that isn’t right. But where do we draw the line and stop worrying about being politically correct every second of the day and see that rape on campuses isn’t always because people are rapists.”
In March, Turner, 20, a former Stanford swim team member, was convicted of three sexual assault felonies. Last week, a judge sentenced the him to six months in county jail and three months probation – a sentence far shorter than the six years prosecutors had asked for.
The letter, published on the New York Magazine site The Cut, sparked outrage, with social media users condemning the woman and urging others not to support the band.
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Amid the backlash, Good English had several cancelled appearances in Ohio and New York, including gigs at Cleveland’s Beachland Ballroom & Tavern as well as Brooklyn’s Northside Festival and Industry City Distillery.
“Good English is not playing our show, removed yesterday from lineup, zero tolerance for the act or the justifying of the act,” ICD officials wrote in a tweet on Tuesday.
The band’s social media accounts were all taken down, but not before Rasmussen issued an apology on the group’s Facebook account, CNN reports.
“I was not there that night. I had no right to make any assumptions about the situation,” she wrote, according to CNN. “Most importantly, I did not acknowledge strongly enough the severity of Brock’s crime and the suffering and pain that his victim endured, and for that lack of acknowledgment, I am deeply sorry. I fully understand the outrage over Brock’s sentencing and my statement. I can only say that I am committed to learning from this mistake.”
Turner’s father, Dan, has also faced criticism for a letter he wrote to Judge Aaron Persky, in which he begged the judge for leniency for his son.
The judge himself has come under fire for the sentencing. Still, he was given a new six-year judicial term on Tuesday.