You know, the world just keeps getting sicker and sicker, doesn't it? We have all this great technology--like high-definition video--and instead of using it to fight injustice, what does one pervert do? He uses it to shoot video of a sexy sports announcer through peepholes in hotel rooms and post the video on the Internet.
Michael David Barrett, 48, of suburban Chicago, agreed (agreed?--he got a choice??) of a 27-month prison sentence after pleading guilty to interstate stalking ESPN reporter Erin Andrews, renting hotel rooms next to Andrews three times, and shooting two videos of her while she was naked. He was accused of posting them on the Internet, and trying to sell them to the gossip site, TMZ.
U.S. District Court Judge Manuel Real gave Barrett the maximum sentence under the law, but for Andrews, that's not near enough. "Thirty months isn't enough," she said after the sentencing.
Federal prosecutors have agreed not to go after Barrett for as many as a dozen or more other women who he allegedly stalked and videotaped. Prosecutors claim that he conducted 30 Internet background checks that can produce birthdays and home addresses of other victims, and that 32 videos provided by DailyMotion.com shows Barrett victimized approximately 16 other women the same way he victimized Andrews. And he's not being prosecuted for this because...?
Barrett cried as he addressed Andrews in court saying he would spend the rest of his life regaining the respect of his friends and family and atoning for his mistakes. Funny, how repentant people are when they get caught, isn't it?
Andrews would have none of this. She said she had no sympathy for Barrett's claim that he was publicly humiliated. It's hard to understand his claim when it was video of a naked Andrews that was put on the Internet. "It's my body on the Internet,"she said. "I'm being traumatized every single day of my life what what he did...This will never be over for me," she said. Andrews said this experience has had a devastating impact on her life and her family because she is constantly reminded that the videos are online--we all know once it's online, it never comes offline--and she's subject to taunts from sports fans when she's working.
It light of all this, it's hard to understand that 2 1/2 years and three year's of probation is all Barrett gets for not only ruining someone's life, but just being who--or what--he is. Watch the video and listen to Andrews. Then ask yourself, was his sentence too light?
What do you think? Is the sentence too light?