The Magic Mike star says the sexual assault convict's minimal sentence is a 'horrible, horrible idea'

By Andrea Park
Updated June 25, 2016 04:45 PM
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Channing Tatum has added his voice to those critical of former Stanford swimmer and sexual assault convict Brock Turner‘s controversial six-month prison sentence.

In a conversation with Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles on Wednesday in France, the Magic Mike star discussed the “very real” concept of rape culture and, specifically, the Turner case.

“I really think it’s a horrible, horrible idea to let someone off because of possibly what they’re gonna be capable of doing,” he said. “Because if you start doing that, where do you end? Where does that stop? Where is that line? Where does that line actually quit?”

Tatum, 36, added: “I don’t think it’s right. I think he should’ve been punished, personally, but I also don’t know what the answer is to protect women, to keep you out of those situations.”

The actor also described his disbelief upon learning of Turner’s sentence.

“I just couldn’t believe it,” Tatum said. “This is like if you killed someone, if you got caught red-handed murdering someone, and then just because you went to a nice school and you were a good swimmer, you somehow get a lesser sentence that what you would’ve for cold-blooded murder. I mean, that doesn’t make any sense.”

What You Need to Know: Ex-Stanford Swimmer Found Guilty of Sexually Assaulting Unconscious Woman

Turner was convicted of three sexual assault felonies in March, for which Judge Aaron Persky sentenced the 20-year-old to six months in prison and three years probation. Although prosecutors asked for a sentence of six years in prison, Persky claimed a longer sentence would have a “severe impact” on Turner. Additionally, authorities told PEOPLE there is a good chance Turner will be released from jail in September, after just three months, for good behavior.

Although Turner’s father has publicly defended his son’s actions, Vice President Joe Biden, Lena Dunham and Turner’s victim herself, among many others, have criticized the judge and the handling of his case.