[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
What was the judge thinking??
A school teacher who allegedly sexually assaulted one of her students dozens of times on campus was reportedly given a much lighter sentence, because… she has such a good reputation in the town? WTF?!
According to the criminal complaint obtained by the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, 75-year-old teacher Anne Nelson-Koch allegedly forced a 14-year-old male student of hers to engage in sexual acts at Tomah Baptist Academy in Wisconsin during the 2016-2017 academic year. The assaults happened during school hours, too. Wow.
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Per the outlet, the alleged sexual abuse only stopped once the teenager left the private school. While Anne did not attempt to contact the victim at first, after they bumped into each other at a Walmart some time after, she then sent him a Christmas card. Then again, they found themselves in the same circle when they began attending the same church. At this point, Nelson-Koch’s former student went to the police in December 2021. In April 2022, she was formally accused by authorities of the abuse, per a Tomah Police Department release via People.
The case eventually landed in court this August, where a jury determined Anne was guilty of 25 counts of sexual assault of a child, child enticement, exposing genitals, exposing intimate parts, and intimidation of the victim. For all of this, she was facing over 600 years in prison!
According to the police report, the Assistant District Attorney Sarah Skiles “attacked Nelson-Koch’s lack of repentance or remorse, calling Nelson-Koch’s virtuous masquerade ‘a calculated attempt to conceal her predatory tendencies.’” The DA believed the teacher should serve 100 years in jail and 60 years of probation, noting the damage “could not be undone but could be accounted for through a just sentence,” the PD reported. Skiles also argued a lengthy sentencing was necessary to “ensure the seriousness of the sexual assault of a child in a school and the pain endured by the victim were not discounted.”
Similarly, the father of the victim insisted his son had only come forward to make sure this doesn’t happen to another child and pleaded with the judge to keep the predator behind bars for the rest of her life.
Here’s the most disturbing and shocking part…
Monroe County Circuit Court Judge Richard Radcliffe ultimately gave Anne just 10 years in prison and 15 years of supervision! She went from over 600 YEARS to just a decade! Whoa. Why the big change??
According to the PD, the judge noted the convicted pedophile, based on her educational and employment history, was “not someone who normally would be [seen] in the criminal justice system facing 600 years of prison.” Uhhh, what does that mean?? She was found guilty of several very disturbing crimes! Sounds like she’s just the kinda person who should be facing that!
When determining the sentence, the judge then went on to acknowledge that while the educator’s impact on the victim and his family was an “aggravating factor,” he believed her reputation in the community as “nice,” “selfless,” “hardworking,” and “giving” were mitigating factors that helped lower her sentence. Who the f**k cares what her reputation was BEFORE she was convicted of sexual assault? This is absurd!!
Despite the insane reasoning for the shorter sentence, ADA Skiles spoke highly of the victim for speaking out, saying after the fact:
“I applaud him for his bravery. Without his courage, Nelson-Koch would still be in the community.”
It’s a good thing the alleged predator will be serving time, but we cannot believe why the judge went easy on her. Thoughts?! Let us know (below)!
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence and would like to learn more about resources, consider checking out https://www.rainn.org/resources.
[Image via Tomah Police Department]