Meet Rosemarie Aquilina, the judge who just locked that shitbag Larry Nassar up
‘I just signed your death warrant’
Over the past few days, more than 150 women have decided to go public with their stories about Larry Nassar, a former U.S. Gymnastics doctor, describing a pattern of sexual abuse spanning 20-plus years.
Nasser was the team doctor for USA Gymnastics and employed by Michigan State University. He’s pleaded guilty to 10 counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct. Among his accusers are Simone Biles and Gabby Douglas, both Olympic all-around champions and many of his victims were minors when the assaults occurred — some as young as 6 years old.
While the testimonies have been horribly sad and almost impossible to watch, Judge Rosemarie Aquilina, the woman who's sentenced the disgraced doctor, has given a voice to each girl. She looked them in the eye when it seemed nobody else would.
"I just signed your death warrant," she told Nassar as she explained he'd serve up to 175 years. Now I don't know about you, but it feels like she's serving in more ways than one. She's listened as women have shared their stories of abuse, she's internalized them and responded thoughtfully each and every time.
"Leave your pain here," she said to the girls, while telling Nassar, "Spending four or five days listening to them is significantly minor, considering the hours of pleasure you had at their expense and ruining their lives."
This GIF of Judge Aquilina throwing away the letter Larry Nassar wrote the court about how hard it is for him to listen to victim testimonies PRETTY MUCH SAYS IT ALL. pic.twitter.com/5HB9WMaPqU
— Ellie Hall (@ellievhall) January 24, 2018
She also described what she'd do to Nassar if it weren't for the Eighth Amendment. "Our Constitution does not allow for cruel and unusual punishment," she said, "but If it did, I have to say, I might allow what he did to all of these beautiful souls—these young women in their childhood—I would allow someone or many people to do to him what he did to others."
And while she specifically asked the media's attention be on the girls who are fighting so bravely and not on her, people should know her name too.