What type of sentences do you think predators should face?
Jennifer MahoneyThere are people who belong in jail and then there are people who belong under it. Jennifer Mahoney would be part of the latter group. The jail-bound convict confessed to molesting a 5-year-old New Jersey girl she was babysitting—and streaming it live on Skype. That poor child was victimized two times over because that, unfortunately, is not all. Mahoney also admitted to abusing the same little girl on another occasion, recording the incident on her iPhone and emailing it to at least one fellow deviant, who was caught with it in Texas.
The rational part of me knows there are women who are just as disgustingly twisted as some men are. They just don’t get caught or called out as often. But the emotional part of me is just so disappointed and appalled because women, in general, are nurturers and caregivers, even in the most basic sense of wanting to make sure the people around us are safe and content.
So it blows my mind that an unsuspecting kid has to be on the receiving end of her perversion.
And the child’s parents? Not much else is known about the girl except she had the misfortune of being under the care of a woman who says she had oral sex with her on camera and violated her in a number of other ways while the little one slept and innocently played in the bathtub. They must feel horrible. I, on the other hand, could gag.
Mahoney’s attorney now claims she’s remorseful for her actions. But how can someone who consciously recorded footage of her wretched misdeeds—going so far as to laugh and joke in the process, then have the space of mind to send it around to other people who are equally as disturbed as she is—be so regretful about it now? The abuse took place last summer or fall and Mahoney has been locked up because of it since December. But really, it took five months of incarceration for the light bulb to go off and make that woman realize what she did was wrong?
Not the first time she did it. Or the second. Or the third. No
epiphanies in between those times. Only when she’s apprehended and
scheduled to face a maximum of 30 years in federal prison does she get
some great a-ha moment that what she did was unethical, immoral, and
downright trifling. I don’t buy it.
Of course, her attorney is claiming mental illness and asking she get 15, not 30, years for her crimes. I agree that every person who sexually abuses a child is somewhat touched in the head. You almost have to be. But I also believe that, as socially functional adults, they know the difference between right and wrong. They usually just don’t care, and that’s the case here with Mahoney.
So let her take her time like a trooper. If she’s regretful enough to admit that she was wrong to take advantage of a child’s innocence and violate her trust and the trust of her parents, then take the sentence and shut up. She did it, she admitted it, now she has to pay for it. And squabbling over how much time she does only undermines her admission. It’s the equivalent of saying, “I’m guilty but I’m not 30-years-in-jail guilty.”
Hopefully, the child is getting therapy and care to ward off any post-traumatic effects. I pray she heals and is able to live a healthy, productive, happy life. As far as I’m concerned, her assailant is right where she needs to be for as long as she can be there.
Do you think child molesters and abusers should get life sentences (which is basically what 30 years for a 33-year-old woman boils down to)?