Call it the Brock Turner effect: An Illinois man received just one year of probation on June 26, after being accused of raping two women.
In September, prosecutors charged John P. Enochs of Downers Grove, Illinois for allegedly raping two former classmates at the University of Illinois — one in 2013 and one in 2015. A plea deal is helping Enoch evade jail time though. He won't serve a prison sentence for either crime.
Under the plea deal, the 21-year-old plead guilty to one count of misdemeanor battery, instead of the two charges of felony rape the prosecutors originally charged him with. For that crime, a judge sentenced him to one year of probation.
The prosecutor’s office is tight-lipped about why they agreed to such lenient plea deal, but here's what we do know about this case:
The second charge:
Another former classmate claimed Enochs raped her in 2013. She'd given up on pressing charges, until she heard about the other victim. Almost three years have passed, but the details of her alleged assault are still chilling:
"In October 2013, a woman told the Indiana University Police Department that Enochs raped her in her residence on Oct. 12, 2013, where a group gathered before attending a Greek function off campus…" The Indy Star reports. "The woman told police she didn't remember what happened, but friends told her they saw what appeared to be Enoch having sex with her, according to the affidavit."When the victim texted Enochs afterward to ask what had happened, he told her, "You blacked out. So I left." But an eyewitness said they saw Enochs having sex with the victim that night, through an open window. The witness said Enochs quickly shuttered the windows after realizing he had been seen.
Despite the emergence of a second victim, the prosecution chose to enter a plea bargain with Enochs, dropping the charges to misdemeanor battery. In a statement obtained by Revelist, they explained that arguing the two cases separately — as Illinois law dictates — would have been nearly impossible.
"After the case(s) was filed, evidence continued to be developed that lead us to the conclusion that neither case, standing alone, presented sufficient evidence to prove rape," the statement read. In both cases, video evidence taken before the assault could have called into question the victim's claims that they were too intoxicated to consent."
"As the Monroe County prosecutors' office has acknowledged through their voluntary dismissal of the rape charges, John Enochs did not rape anyone and he should never have been charged with these offenses," the defense said in a statement obtained by ABC.
The 21-year-old did, however, plead guilty to battery with moderate bodily injury. The maximum sentence for simple battery in Illinois is one year in prison and a $2,500 fine. Enochs received one year’s probation. Additionally, as the prosecution noted in their statement, Enochs entered this plea as a level six felony. The court decided to drop the charge to a misdemeanor.