A Maryland judge sentenced a Baltimore police officer to home detention after the officer was convicted of raping a 22-year-old woman, ruling that the victim “didn’t suffer psychological injure” as a result of the sexual assault, local NBC affiliate WBAL-TV reports.
According to the station, officer Anthony Westerman, 27, “was convicted in August of two counts of second-degree rape, third- and fourth-degree sexual offense and second-degree assault of a 22-year-old woman in October 2017. In addition, Westerman was convicted of second-degree assault of another woman in June 2019.
On the day of the assault, Westerman offered to get an Uber ride for a woman who said she drank too much at a bar in White Marsh, but instead “took her to his house and raped her,” prosecutors said.
After Westerman’s conviction, prosecutors recommended he serve five to 10 years in prison. But during a sentencing hearing on Friday, Baltimore County Circuit Court Judge Keith Truffer dismissed a count of second-degree rape and ruled that the victim had not suffered psychological injury as a result of the assault, WBAL-TV reported.
The judge then sentenced Westerman to 15 years of incarceration but suspended all but for four years of home detention.
The sentence left Baltimore County State’s Attorney Scott Shellenberger and the victim stunned.
“This defendant, who has been convicted of second-degree rape, will be serving the sentence in the privacy of their own home and that was certainly not something we were expecting or looking for,” Shellenberger said.
“We do not believe that Westerman is properly punished in this case for what he did,” Shellenberger said. “I fear this could cause rape victims to hesitate to report their crimes if they do not feel like they will get justice,” he added.