No Prison For Colorado Student Who Raped 'Helpless' Freshman

Austin Wilkerson told friends of a fellow University of Colorado-Boulder student who drank too much at a party that he’d take care of her. Instead, he raped her as she drifted out of consciousness and lied about what he had done.

Wilkerson, 22, convicted of sexual assault of a helpless victim and unlawful sexual contact, faced a possible prison sentence of four years to life for the March 2014 attack on the freshman woman. But a judge in Boulder, Colorado, on Wednesday sentenced him to two years on work release and 20 years’ probation.

“I’ve struggled, to be quite frank, with the idea of, ‘Do I put him in prison?’” said Judge Patrick Butler, according to the Daily Camera newspaper. “I don’t know that there is any great result for anybody. Mr. Wilkerson deserves to be punished, but I think we all need to find out whether he truly can or cannot be rehabilitated.”

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