Two teenage boys in Chicago who sexually assaulted a teenage girl and broadcast it on Facebook Live in March 2017 were sentenced Wednesday to five years of probation and ordered to register as sexual offenders.
The Chicago Tribune reports that Cook County Juvenile Division Judge Patricia Mendoza had already indicated she would sentence the teens to probation after they pleaded guilty in November to one count of child pornography.
A prosecutor read from the now-16-year-old girl’s victim-impact statement in which she described how the sexual assault “has very traumatically altered” her life.
Longtime friends have turned their backs on her and even sent her threatening messages over social media.
“The worst part of this is being able to Google my name and seeing everything that happened to me,” the victim wrote.
Prosecutors wanted both boys, now 15, to serve time in prison facilities for juveniles. They had already spent four months in custody prior to being released with electronic monitors.
Judge Mendoza said that a potential lifetime as registered sex offenders would have more repercussions on them than spending several more months in confinement. While she ordered the electronic monitoring of the two to come to an end, a restraining order still prohibits them from contacting the victim.
“It’s time for you gentlemen to start adjusting to your new life,” Mendoza said.
As part of the sentence, both boys will have to follow treatment recommendations and will have to continue to register even if they move out of Cook County.
They will be able to petition the court to be taken off the registry after 10 years.
About 40 people watched the Facebook Live broadcast of the victim, then 15, being assaulted by as many as six individuals. No one called the police.
The victim knew the two defendants and was lured by them into a basement where the attack took place. They threatened to sic a pit bull on her if she tried to escape.
The two teens sentenced Wednesday were charged in April. A third suspect, also 15, was charged in October. His case is pending.
Read more at the Chicago Tribune.