Brandon Vandenburg sports-rape trial: Questions not asked

Talk about brave.  The victim in the Vanderbilt football-gang rape case came back to face her accusers.  Only Cory Batey, who had not known the victim before attacking her within two minutes of her unconscious body being dumped on the floor, faced her.  Cory apologized.  Then he cried.

Brandon Vandenburg, the victim’s former boyfriend and date for the evening, did not face the victim.  But then, Brandon also opted not to really face anything.  Brandon is relying on his defense attorneys to speak for him; and per Brandon’s right not to provide any testimony which might backfire and work to assist in getting himself convicted, Brandon used the Fifth Amendment, to not testify.

However, throughout the trial, the one question I wished DA Jan Norman had asked, was simple.

                           “Do you still drink?”

The answer would have revealed whether any of the ex Vanderbilt football players who  now answer as “Defendants” had learned anything.   Anything at all. But it wasn’t asked.

Brandon limited himself to stealing looks to his family during jury instructions.

Vandenburg - Vandenburgh family paying attention during jury instructions

Brandon Vandenburg’s family listening to jury instructions

Vandendburg - Brandon steals a look at his family during jury instructions

 

 

 

 

Clues to how Brandon arrived at his criminal sense of entitlement and complete degradation towards women might be found…on Facebook!  Consider a comment made by Terry,  a friend of Brandon’s Dad, Rod.  Rod wrote “Heard this oldie today…brought back a big smile…it’s one of my favorites!!!” in November of 2011.

Vandenburg - Rod - Favorite song - Sexual HealingBut Terry answered,

“Hey Rod:  This song could be your National Athem (sic).”

The song?

Marvin Gaye’sSexual Healing.”

Contrast that with Rod Vandenburg’s parental creed, which oddly enough, he also believes.

Additional parental clues are also available.  See Brandon and DadVandenburg - Rod Vandendburg and son Brandon post-bail, in California. Both look happy and relaxed.  Perhaps they thought the attorneys all had it “handled.”

Also consider in March of 2009, Brandon’s dad, Rod’s creepy musings,

“Hmmm, can’t wait for tonight?” just before Brandon takes his high school girlfriend out for a big date.

Rod Vandenburg - creepy musings about Brandon's date nightand then from the window.  “That’s right, his Daddy…taught him some good old fashion “Southern Charm”….works every time!”

Rod Vandenburg - more creepy musings about Brandon's date night

But it’s fair to say things were loose among the parents where alcohol was concerned.

Note the comment about Moms from one of Brandon’s high school buddies.

“Shout out to Xavier moms who drove home drunk from my house last night.  That’s a Great example.  Good job ladies!”

Vandenburg - Miles Finley hates waiting on women

Also, consider texts from other Dad’s of friends.  They know what’s going on.  “Remove some of the bodies in the house is (sic) well”

Dads who provide no parental example beyond keeping the house clean.

College dads - not parenting

No parental comment from Dad as to the “Hoes”  Zip.

College dads - hoesThen consider Brandon’s mom, Shawna Vandenburg who states her worry about “ulterior motives, after she knows the lengths Brandon employed to hide evidence.

In full denial or pr mode; when Mom Shawna lists 10 reasons she loves her son Brandon  – his arrest and charge of assault, after he was bailed out, wasn’t on the list.  Nor was any prior mention of Brandon while in high school, being benched for most of a season for his “bad attitude.”

Vandenburg - Shawna's 10 reasons don't include Brandon's CA ArrestNow compare the hangover musings of Brandon’s crew in California, prior to Vanderbilt.

Vandenburge - Miles Finley - hangoversWith a sleepover with Brandon’s younger, twin brothers below, in December 4, 2014

Anyone see a deja vu possibility here?

Vandenburg - Shawna's obliviousness continues

Meanwhile, the jury deliberates.

 

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About bonnie russell

It's not about me....but working with and sometimes against attorneys, I *do* find interesting people doing interesting things.
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178 Responses to Brandon Vandenburg sports-rape trial: Questions not asked

  1. brian h. says:

    Great blog, thanks for news on this rapist. long sentence hopefully please?

    Like

  2. Dee says:

    I would advise anyone that takes a look at Shawna Vandenburg s Facebook or Twitter, prepare yourself for some bs. The Facebook is the worst.

    Like

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Great article! I just wished you would have included the friend’s comment after Shawna Vandenburg lists how great her son is. “Alright all single young women of marriageable age we shall start the bidding on the man of your dreams. The bidding starts at 1 million. 1 million goes to 2, 2 million raised to 3. 3 raised to 3.5 million. Do we have a bid for 4 million dollars? Ladies, mind this list of impeccable credentials, abilities, and possibilities! We have 4, 4 raised to 5…” Sorry, I would prefer my future husband to not encourage strangers to rape me??

    Like

  4. jesussaves says:

    I am assuming you have never made a mistake in your life? You have been perfect this entire time? I am not saying this kid Vandenburg is innocent and nor should he be treated in a positive aspect. He is clearly the epitome of a cocky football player. Yes, he should be punished for his crime but lady, you should be ashamed of yourself. I am thankful we have a great due process system in the country. It worked the way it was supposed to in this case but going after the guys family on the internet is pretty low. Plus, his brothers are minors. You are clearly bashing little kids. I feel sorry for people like you that have little else to do with your time but to write really pathetic blogs about other people because your life is so terrible it makes you feel better. How long did it take you to find all of those pictures? Geez….get a life!!!!!!!!

    Like

    • Thanks for writing what turns out to be every incorrect assumption possible. Really, I think it’s a new record. It could be a natural gift. But it is curious someone who picks “Jesus saves” as a name, begins with such arrogance. Also, you seem to not understand some basic elements here. In particular, “Going after a guys family on the internet” not remotely accurate considering it took about three seconds to find what was…wait for it: their writings. Maybe if Jesus saves, you could ask nicely Him to save you from writing idiotic things online. Toodles.

      Like

    • PWaldp says:

      “I am assuming you have never made a mistake in your life?” Do you mean, like supervising the rape of a helpless young woman, taking pictures of her disgrace while his football buddy urinates on her, sending the pictures back to my friends in California? No. I can say with certitude, the mistakes I’ve made come anywhere close to that league. “Sure let’s give the poor kid a break! He’s just a boy for Heaven’s sake – this may cost him a multimillion dollar NFL career – not to mention the entitlement that comes with that. Boys WILL be boys now won’t they?”

      Whatever contributed to the sense of entitlement that led to this vicious crime including poor parenting, and the environment in which this young misogynist grew up, is a fair field for academic, journalistic or legal inquiry. Clearly you wouldn’t understand that. Your absence of critical thinking suggests that you must have spent your time in school studying the “Scientific proof Creationism.”

      You pay lip service to the kid having to pay for the crime he committed but are a lot more cranked up about your sense of pique over a legitimate examination of his family background which very likely contributed to his social maladaption. Your commitment to “justice,” comes across like some kind of “WTF, life goes on. Forgive and forget. Right?”
      So Geez….get an education!!! Or maybe, grab a brain!!!!
      Nice piece of journalism Bonnie. Carry on

      Like

  5. joe jones says:

    If you want to know the quality of someone’s character, just look at their children’s behavior.

    Like

  6. brian h. says:

    Mr Vanderburg can wipe that smart alec, fishlips pout, greasy fauxhawk haircut look off his baby face, he is GOING TO BE VERY POPULAR in prison, he will be attacked, taken advantage of and become someones’ boyfriend in prison…it is going to be a HARD time for the lil baby boy, and so at least now he can know the terror of being gang raped in prison and live with this girl’s life being forever destroyed. I wish her peace and hopefully she will find her true love one day and can live happily ever after….

    Like

    • Dorothy Rothchild says:

      It would really be great if we could all call a moritorium on prison rape jokes. No one deserves to be raped – not even rapists. Over 90% of inmates will get out of prison at some point. I would prefer if the guy who just may happen to pass me, my daughter, sister or mother in a parking lot was not someone with years of pent up rage because he’s been repeatedly gang raped over the course of many years.

      Like

    • Amanda says:

      Ah, the American hypocrisy…
      Rape is RAPE! If you condemn rape, you shall strongly disapprove it irrespective of the fact that the person has been convicted of an offence or not. I simply don’t get why Americans expect prisoners to be considered as nonpersons? Aren’t they human beings (don’t say they are animals, blah, blah)? Or do the so-called American “victims” have such low mentality that makes them worse than the offender? I do believe the latter should be true. Retributive justice (state sanctioned crimes) should have no place in a civilized society – its as good as committing crimes under immunity.

      – Amanda, Norway

      Like

      • I agree with you 100%. Apparently any number of people who label themselves “Conservatives” could be more accurately described as,
        “Self-appointed Earth-bound representatives of God, and haters to the bone.” (They either forgot or don’t understand our Founding Fathers left England to avoid high taxes and the British demanding a certain religion). However, some Americans are now the very people our Founding Fathers, fled. I wrote about one, a rapist friend judge, and the women who supported him, here.

        Also, I remain conflicted in some areas. Largely am anti-death penalty, but do have exceptions. Anders Behring Breivik, a self-avowed right wing Christian, who spent an hour or so while posing as a policeman, hunting down innocent children, is one I wouldn’t have a problem with Sweden killing.

        Like

    • Robert McClurkan says:

      Amen to your post brian h. I hope the jerk rots in prison and never sees the light of day. Typical screwball family from which is issued.

      Like

  7. John Doe says:

    Some interesting investigative reporting here, learned a lot from your findings. Apparently this court case was being streamed live (from what the press could access-censoring victim’s name, etc.) and happened to miss that. Any chance you would be able to know where to find any of that recorded footage for us?

    Like

  8. T says:

    I’m not defending the kid by any means but attacking his family is flat out wrong. Just because the kid drunkenly made a disgusting mistake doesn’t give you any reason to publicly attack his family. Ridiculing this kid and his family does nothing to help the victim; it just makes you look immature. It’s a tragic story from both sides and this is not the right approach to discussing this story.

    Like

    • The family made this public. Pointing out the obvious from what the parents posted is just that. Also, the “kid” committed the cover up crimes while sober. Something his mother also tried to cover. So your finger of blame, is pointing in the wrong direction.

      Liked by 1 person

      • brian h. says:

        You are soooo right Bonnie. Amen.

        “this is not the right approach to discussing this story.”.

        FOP OFF T. and take your silly drunken a$$ right out of here…thank you.

        Like

      • T says:

        while sober? http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/sec/2015/01/27/vanderbilt-players-verdict-guilty-rape-vandenburg-batey/22430567/
        one specifically testified that he was drunk and on video claimed he was on cocaine. The other didn’t testify at all, so we don’t know. I’ll tell you what though, college kids don’t go to formals sober. Moreover, given his date passed out, I highly doubt he didn’t drink at all. And what you did was troll his parents’ Facebook pages, not expose any essential facts about the perpetrators or victim.

        Like

      • Re-read it. Brandon flew home, sober, and got real busy trying to destroy evidence. Oh, he also got himself arrested in CA. New charge. Are you getting the picture that Brandon felt he was impervious to the law, yet? And more importantly, how his parents may have helped his belief system to a very bad end?

        Like

      • T says:

        I mean, including pictures of a middle school sleepover exemplifies exactly what is wrong with this post.

        Like

      • Disagree, obviously. It’s a great demonstration that nothing has been learned.

        Like

      • T says:

        My bad I read that incorrectly. Nonetheless I’m not defending the kids by any means I’m simply criticizing your blog post here. All I’m saying is that attacking his family (including middle school aged siblings) is uncalled for.

        Like

      • Wasn’t an attack. Was pointing out his parents seem to have learned zip; is all. However, given those middle school kids were at the trial, they got a quick reality check.

        Like

    • brian h. says:

      drunk, high, whatever. you commit a crime
      and are caught
      you pay for your crime

      T. go away. this is a place for intelligent discussions on rapists

      Like

      • T says:

        “FOP OFF T. and take your silly drunken a$$ right out of here…thank you”
        I’m the one who lacks intelligence? Okay… very logical, mature insight. Next time you should actually respond to some of my points and properly discuss an issue rather than using dollar signs to censor a swear word while making meaningless statements.

        Like

    • Liz says:

      I agree with you! It’s a very sad situation for all involved.

      Like

    • jackson says:

      wow can you be any stupider…this WAS NOT A MISTAKE…..it’s obvious she was drugged….PERIOD…Vanderburg is a psychopath…giggling and laughing….did you see the surveo;ene tapes when they carried her into the dorm…he was smiling and none of these rapists appears to be staggering or weaving about….they were not as drunk as they would like us to believe…they had the presence of mind to use condoms and stupidity to take pictures…What is wrong with the way children are being raised now adays…no morals values or ethics…just take take take and use people..these are vile dispicable animals

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Jane says:

    Let’s hope that a big, hairy bloke with a big dick rapes them both as they are laying face down on the floor…

    Like

  10. newprude says:

    I think the thing that upsets me the most is this feeling of Brandon “just” taking pictures but not actually penetrating the girl so he’s not guilty of rape. He: gave her the 5 drinks, carried her passed out into the room, encouraged his friends to rape her and videotaped the whole thing. Refraining from entering her is the only thing he DIDNT do. He got off and thought his buds would get off on watching an unconscious woman get sodimized. And rest assured, had he been able to get an erection he would have participated. In my eyes he’s guilt is tenfold because he knew the girl.

    They are all very lucky this woman didn’t die. Alcohol poisoning is no joke.

    Like

    • I agree. Also, according to the woman’s testimony, she arrived earlier and had a drink that was brought by a girlfriend. Then another. However, when she began “feeling” it, she also gave away drinks that were brought to her. When Brandon showed up he brought her a couple of different kinds and encouraged her to try them telling her some new drinks were really good. (She was a gin and tonic type). Personally, I think the victim was drugged, but can’t say by whom. The reports came out with Brandon saying he was too amped on cocaine to get an erection. My total disdain is reserved for Marc Prioleau, the guy who was sober, sleeping on the top bunk, who saw what was going on, then Rolled Over and pretended to be asleep. Testifying a year and a half later, he still says he doesn’t know if he would speak up. Clearly Prioleau wouldn’t have stopped an in-progress rape like these two guys did. http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Stanford-athlete-accused-of-raping-unconscious-6044286.php

      Liked by 1 person

    • Marilyn N says:

      And the PEED on her as well – OMG – these guys are wimps whose actions say this is the way they can make themselves feel superior to a smart, strong woman (driving a Mercedes). May they NEVER achieve an erection again!!

      Like

    • Marilyn N says:

      Can you imagine being with some guy you knew and trusted and considered a boyfriend, and have this happen to you? HORRIBLE!

      Like

    • jackson says:

      i agree, i feel brandon the psycopath is actuall the worst of the lot as he fed this unconscious human being to these depraved animals to do as they like. Look at brandons eyes and face…he exudes pure evil

      Like

  11. newprude says:

    Thank you for your intelligent insite to this case. I look forward to your reports on the penalty phase and the trials of the other two defendants. I personally believe the other two guys will face the same verdict as Brandon and Corey unless the cut a deal.

    Like

  12. Thanks. I have the sentencing date calendared. I agree the remaining defendants are going down. For some reason this case struck a cord with me. I don’t think the DA will offer any more deals as there’s no reason. The DA is in the cat bird seat – and they are in the hot seat. How sad, too bad. 🙂

    Like

    • Dorothy Rothchild says:

      I’m betting they will drop the charges in the California case. I can’t see the county wanting to go through the expensive process of extradicting him back to California now that it’s pretty clear he’s going to spend a lengthy amount of time in prison in Tennessee.

      Like

  13. Susan Carlson says:

    Your insights, Bonnie, are spot-on! In this day-and-age where parents are NEVER held responsible for the way they raise their kids, one need look no further than the mindless, self-aggrandizing, narcissistic, sociopathic parenting of Rod & Shawna Vandenburg, and the devil’s spawn they are producing. (I say “producing” because, remember, this immoral, self-aggrandizing husband and wife spit out a houseful of these mysogynistic threats-to-society.) And Mother Madonna Shawna (y’know who I mean: the face-saving mother who sends her kids to parochial school as “insurance” for any future misdeeds) is so narcissistic that she lays it all out there for all the world to see in her own words in her mindless social media postings. (And, please, God save us from some Hollywood yutz giving Shawna & Rod their own reality show – now, come on, folks, y’know that’s going to be next.) Just Google “Shawna Vandenburg realtor” and look at the photo of Shawna from her real estate website, posing w/ her proud, exhibitionist butt stuck up in the air, while she bends over toward the camera w/ her way-past-prime bosom falling out! (Geez, doesn’t that provoke disturbing shared overtones with Brandon’s videos of his evening of rape and humiliation of his poor girlfriend?) Any grown woman and mother like Shawna who strikes a Playboy pose on a business website has some serious psychosexual issues. Looks like this may be where Brandon Vandenburg developed his obvious mysogynistic attitudes toward women – from the inappropriate, childish behavior of both his parents. The scary thing is that narcissistic parents like the Vandenburgs are raising the kids of our future – with impunity! God help us all. And, please, spare me, the Vandenburgs are NOT God-fearing believers, as they keep putting out there in social media. They are self-righteous, opportunistic hypocrites who hide behind the church and Christianity. Then, when they all get in trouble when their way of life catches up w/ them, they go running to the church. Shameful. They are exactly the kind of people who make a mockery of Christianity and true faith. I’m just saying’.

    Like

    • Wait. We don’t know a thing about the younger boys….and as they went to Nashville, likely any kind of denial they had, promptly ended. Also, in fairness, Shawna was religious prior to the debacle of Brandon.

      Like

      • Marilyn N says:

        I’m certain mama Vandenburg now thinks somehow this is God’s plan for her sonny boy…….

        Like

      • I feel badly for Shawna, who still has to raise two boys. She has a lot of church support. One would hope for everyone’s sake, she and Rod would consider making some changes in their lives.

        Like

    • Marilyn N says:

      If you observe the poses of papa Rodney, I have no doubt he couldn’t wait for his little boy to get out there and get some. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, as the saying goes!!
      Also, from my investigating, mama and papa are divorced.

      Like

    • Sue Martinez says:

      Great comment!

      Like

  14. 1grace says:

    Malignant narcissism traits–>BV. Cool hip parenting; ie, drinking and partying with your children and their friends did not help either. After reading your writings, I see very little of Christian characteristics displayed by BV or his mother…other than quoting scripture here and there. Be remorseful and admission of guilt would be a good place to start.

    Like

  15. Brandon Vandenslimes twitter acct is pretty funny to google. Its full of self righteous biblical quotes.
    Vomit.

    Like

    • Marilyn N says:

      Yes – just like mama. I’m sure she thinks God is answering her prayers with the new info about the juror and a possible mistrial……..

      Like

  16. Jo Fields says:

    Thank you ,Bonnie Russell, for your blog. After watching 20/20 tonight and hearing how this event unfolded……..my first thought was, what was this boy’s upbringing ? What kind of parents did he have? Your comments were very insightful. Thank you.

    Like

  17. MR360 says:

    As someone on The Tennessean web site pointed out, this was not “an entry level crime.” Somehow,somewhere, young Brandon has gotten the message that it is okay to assault and degrade women. Who knows what he “got away with” before this? Very disturbing that this was his girlfriend. Instead of being protective of her,he encouraged others to rape and defile her while she was utterly incapacitated and defenseless. He “giggled” and took video. Something is seriously wrong with this young man. Using the family’s own words and photos,it seems as if
    they are a pretty shallow and narcissistic bunch. Let me amend that. The parents and Brandon. I pray that the two younger ones are raised not to buy into the entitled jock culture. I hope Brandon will use his time in prison to learn and grow. Tennessee is a “100%” state,so he will not get time off for good behavior,etc. At the minimum he will go away until he is 36 years old..longer if the sentences are not concurrent or the judge decides on longer that the minimum. I hope the victim gets all of the help and support that she deserves. 30 minutes and at least five lives ruined.

    Like

    • Three things stood out for me in ABC’s piece.

      One; I was struck by Brandon’s developing Southern accent. He hadn’t been in Nashville very long at all. However, his father had once made reference to his teaching good ole Southern charm, so perhaps it was family related. I once moved from upstate New York to Texas – and it took awhile before I could understand what people were saying! 🙂 (A Texas accent can be pretty thick.) It was a while before “ya’ll” replaced, “you guys” (no matter the gender) in my vernacular.

      Second; I don’t believe I have ever seen someone who facilitated a multiple account sex crime, delight in doing so, more than Brandon Vandenburg.

      Third; For someone too amped up on cocaine and alcohol to participate….Vandenburg sobered up almost immediately to formulate a plan to destroy the evidence.

      Like

      • Janet Marlette says:

        Bonnie, there is something about this case that really stood out to me too, and I think it was most likely that I knew even though there is no doubt this group of individuals did what they did (and offered up their own video proof to substantiate it) there would still be males and some females too, accusing the victim, and excusing the rapists. It is hard to believe that even when there is no reason to doubt what happened, the victim will still be maligned and blamed. I was in an abusive relationship with two “men” after an upbringing that taught me I had to kiss the ass of a man to hold on to him, regardless of what he did to me. Hearing the way this little wad made her apologize to him and defend him to the police is what resonated with me, as this is the hallmark of a true abuser. The one thing that I have not heard or read about yet though, that makes me think he had a real motive to defile her, and that he planned it in advance and drugged her, is that his behavior during the rapes, his claims that he could not get an erection because he was too amped, and then the few seconds of sex he tried to have with her the following day, is that my gay-dar alarm is ringing off the hook. Especially after hearing on 20/20 that his little buddies back home were giving him instructions on how to further humiliate and defile her. Does anyone else feel that he was trying to show his “friends” they are not competing with this woman, who he targeted to drug and rape? His father had it all planned out it seems, that he could live vicariously through his “jock” son…but I really have to wonder why this person would behave in such a vile manner, and I have been the target of gay hostility in more than one instance. Nothing of this degree of course, but it all seemed too sickeningly familiar to me.

        Like

      • Thanks, and yes. My blog had a couple of men who were bound and determined to blame the women. One was a personal trainer whose FB page featured many many half naked men because he worked as a personal trainer and was in “a domestic partnership.” He wrote “I fully support Brandon” and kept writing but eventually, after three days, finally realized his comments were not going to be approved.

        Returning to your question, yes. There was more than one instance based on their behavior when questions regarding Brandon’s sexuality came to mind; and that’s separate from gay men with significant mother issues. I mean, when doesn’t Mom get most of the blame, either way? However, what bothered me most; remains the same.

        The DA seemed not to notice Brandon went from “too amped” to get an erection, to quickly becoming sober enough to call for help and plan his massive, delete and destroy campaign. (Followed up with him blaming the woman.) But returning to your comments, although Joey was also charged, the vibe I got was Brandon and Miles struck me as birds of a feather in more ways than one.

        Liked by 1 person

    • jackson says:

      Janet he is not gay…don’t get that at all…what i do get is that he is a psychopath with no empathy or compassion in his filthy body. He could care less about anyone but himself.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Barbara Gordon says:

    I found your blog the other day and I want to thank you so much for your insights.

    I’m a mother of two teenagers, a boy and a girl. The “boys will be boys” mentality which often seems to underline the excuses given for these young men confound me. This wasn’t a “mistake” it was a violent attack on a helpless person. Who does this? Clearly these people.

    I am stunned at the lack of intervention, the roommate in particular who rolled over. He should have gotten up, left the room if he was afraid, and called 911 but no He did nothing. I wish he had been charged in this. Meanwhile the friends in CA, what was that about? They receive such horrible images and don’t alert anybody or at the very least say “that isn’t right, stop it” ?

    I think the parents are a very legitimate investigative target because this type of thing doesn’t happen in a vacuum. We learn empathy from our parents. I am appalled by the parents lack of empathy for the victim and how they’ve made excuses for their son at every turn.

    Finally what are your thoughts about this latest news of the male juror who was involved in a statutory rape case 20 years ago and the defense move for a new trial? if the juror didn’t lie and the defense didn’t ask about prior incidents then can this be an issue?

    Thank you again for your insight and thoughts.

    Like

    • I agree the “boys will be boys” mentality is confounding. But, the good news is that statenent alone means the person self-identifies as not quite operating at optimum speed.

      Also, the Sober roommate who rolled over bothered me almost as much as those violating the victim for sport. So much so I wrote about him, (below) in another column about two guys who stopped a rape in progress.

      I believe Shawna is receiving the most negative attention for three reasons. The first; her ongoing Facebook posts thanking her supporters while not acknowledging Mistakes were made, demonstrate she seems either unwilling or incapable of self-reflection. One would hope as the video clearly showed Brandon’s delight as he brought his prey back home to be torn apart by jackals, before trying to coax his prey to lie for him, that Shawna would at the very least, respond to the fact her son was clearly enjoying his depravity.

      The second reason Shawna is getting most of the flack is – no one puts much stock in the father.

      Third; stats show when parents are prosecuted for leaving their kids in car seats and the kids die, of those prosecuted, the mothers received longer prison sentences. No matter what, everyone blames Moms, more.

      My thoughts about the newest wrinkle with the now-former jurors; from the interview with the jury foreman and the one who was herself [update: My error – it was male rape victim and statutory] a rape victim twenty years ago; that depends what was asked in Voir Dire, (the process of asking questions before seating a juror) and whether the juror lied outright if specifically asked. This is why the transcript will have to be reviewed before deciding. Some women who were raped get over it. As do some men. I remember once reading about a Florida woman who was blinded after being raped. Her rapist (and I say “her” rapist not “the” rapist – because she wound up owning his future) threw lye in her face so she couldn’t Identify him. Forgetting he spoke and she remembered his voice. (This was pre-DNA.) Anyway when the DA suggested he’d destroyed her life she replied

      “No sir. That man took a day out of my life – and I’m not giving him one minute more.”

      I couldn’t do that – but thought, ‘Wow you go, girl!’

      My personal opinion is the Defense had to file. Given the team was so, Defensed. (Another column was titled, Vandenberg verdict – is it too soon to mention legal malpractice.

      Am not worried. The rape was two decades ago and for some women, men aren’t that powerful.

      So my personal opinion is it’s just another in their series of “Hail Mary” passes.

      Like

      • Barbara Gordon says:

        Thank you so much for your thoughts!

        Yes, unfortunately the mom gets assigned more blame when these things happen, sadly she’s not doing herself any favors with her facebook posts. I understand the first instinct is to believe what your kids are telling you. None of us want to believe our babies would be capable of such horrifying behavior.

        I read an earlier post of hers on facebook where she said Brandon told her that he wasn’t involved, very similar to the lies he told his friend and of course the worst lie, the one he told the victim (which in my opinion is utterly horrific and having sex with her after the fact, allowing her to apologize and playing the victim is a violation and betrayal upon the original unimaginable one)

        I understand that she would take him at face value However, once the evidence was out and she *knew* he lied to her, I can not understand doubling down in to the persecuted mode. The father’s breakdown at the trial didn’t get much sympathy from me, what were they expecting? Their son was an active participant. Just because he didn’t penetrate her doesn’t absolve him. This reminds me of people who do murder for hire, just because they didn’t pull the trigger doesn’t mean they are not culpable. This wouldn’t have happened without Brandon. The refrain from Brandon’s team that he’s guilty of taking photos he shouldn’t have is stunning. That is it? The victim was his girlfriend, she trusted him and he violated that trust in every way imaginable.

        I’m likely confused but I thought the juror who was raped was a man and it was a case of statutory rape? I really hope the juror didn’t lie, and it was more Defense malpractice as you put in your other post and they didn’t ask the question. When I heard the juror was male, maybe they didn’t think to ask that question? (if indeed it was a male juror)

        This story is disgusting on so many levels, from the sober roommate who did nothing, to all the bystanders who did nothing, to these 4 males who thought, sure, why not. The drunk defense is so laughable.

        Thanks again!

        Like

  19. Thanks for your thoughts, also. What I noticed from ABC’s piece was as drunk as Brandon claimed to be initially, he sure sobered up pretty fast to plot the destruction of evidence. I thought the DA would mention that. However, what he did have was more than enough. Still would like to know more about Coach Franklin.

    Like

    • Barbara Gordon says:

      Yes! He sure was thinking clearly wasn’t he. Yes, I would love to know about Coach Franklin. I also hope Finley, the CA friend, gets some time, that kid doesn’t impress me at all. I wish the sober, pretending to sleep roommate was charged in this too, but I guess doing nothing even if you’re in middle of a crime scene isn’t a crime.

      Like

  20. The former friends of Brandon, remained friends with Finley.

    Like

    • Barbara Gordon says:

      Finley’s abhorrent text from last night’s 20/20 will hopefully cause some of these people to re-evaluate who they call friend. If Finley hasn’t already taken a deal I hope it’s withdrawn.

      Like

  21. Um, don’t really see that as happening, particularly with his women friends in entry level jobs.
    At twenty-one, many still use their off hours to get their party on. Twenty-one is still after all, twenty-one. One of the females wrote, “You’re old!”

    (Hand smacking forehead: Gee. All this time I thought dying young wasn’t the goal.) : D

    Like

  22. Gloria says:

    I think BV is no different than Ted Bundy and thank the police for recognizing him for what he is and not letting go of this case. Many lives may be saved because BV will be in jail.

    Like

    • Disagree for two reasons. One, numbers. Bundy admitted to killing 30 women. His lawyer claims Ted Bundy killed 100 men and women. All by himself. Which is key. (However, the attorney did have a book to sell.)

      The second reason being Bundy was very smart and disciplined. He successfully sued AT&T for overcharging while sitting in a county jail Colorado.

      Then he escaped.

      Vandenburg proved he is neither smart or disciplined.

      After the verdict was read, Vandenburg asked his attorney, “What happened?”

      Like

      • Moms Hugs says:

        If i recall correctly (it’s been awhile), Bundy became the poster child of psychopathy for psychiatry/psychology & law experts before Dahmer, Manson & other copycat killers came along. He was sociable, charming & could literally change his persona on a whim. Again, the question is one of when & why does a person become a sociopath, and then turn into a psychopath. Whether that is relevant to the Vanderbilt case remains to be seen, but I do believe he came across to the jury as a sociopath ringleader.

        What is relevant to the Vanderbilt case is the question of whether BV’s attorney was intimating that he should have been evaluated by a psychiatrist early on in this case when he claimed, while choking back tears, that BV just doesn’t understand what happened. This may have been highly recommended by his previous lawyer, which was viewed as highly offensive by both BV & his parents who believed his story & are footing the bill. If that is the case, that may explain Perez’s tearful statement, but there’s no escaping the cold look in BV’s eyes while being hugged by him.

        Like

  23. Marilyn N says:

    Wonder if the boys get to watch the Super Bowl !!!

    Like

  24. wlh says:

    Do you think the victim will make a statement at the sentence? Also what about Brandon, any chance he will?

    Like

    • The victim made a statement, which was happily read by the DA, after the verdict. Yes, I think Brandon will say something at his sentencing; although I have no idea what that might be.

      Also must add Nashville’s SAC (Sexual Assault Center) still doesn’t get it. They are having a fundraiser with @Tailgatebeer which will donate a dollar a pint to their facility.
      Yes…drink up! See the notice here. I cannot support that kind of lunacy, but imagine there will be a lot of drunken people around to pitch in. Possibly to be Exhibit A in: “What could possibly go wrong?”

      Like

  25. wlh says:

    I am glad Corey will be talking on Dr. Phil next week, I think this will bring more awareness to Sexual Assault and poor treatment of women. Brandon does come across as an entitled football player. I wonder if he has any guilt at all for his awful treatment of this woman.

    Also do you think they would have got less time if they plead guilty?

    Like

    • Dr. Phil? Not for me. I have been at a taping and it was obnoxious. Dr. Phil is no longer licensed, by the way. Remember, it’s Show Business.

      Like

    • newprude says:

      I think Corey going on Dr. Phil is his attempt to clean his tarnished image before he’s sentenced. As someone pointed out up thread; this was not an entry level crime. Corey actually penetrated and urinated on the victim. Saw pictures the next day, deleted them and went to church. He wasn’t shaken to the core. He deleted and didn’t give a crap. Did you see the 20/20 episode? I LITERALLY laughed out loud when he did his pretend cry on the stand. I think he’s fueled by the God forgives doctrine. I did it, I’m really sorry so let’s all just move on. It was funny watching him squirm in his chair when he saw the reactions of the jury watching that video. I don’t want to hear the word “mistake” come out of his mouth. I don’t want the focus to be on drinking either. I want to find out if this man has an ounce of compassion or a soul in his body.

      Like

      • While Corey isn’t the honor student, he sure is better at understanding what his life might look like for the next couple of decades than “honor student” Brandon Vandenburg. My next hope is the victim sues Vanderbilt University. Am sure Vandenburg has bent over backwards to make her life better. I will watch “Dr” Phil but not without worrying about a sudden urge to vomit.

        Like

      • Janet Marlette says:

        Oh Corey made a mistake alright. He is really sorry…that he got caught. I have to say I am intrigued by what you saw as an audience member on Dr. Phil though Bonnie. I have seen more than a couple people saying the videos shown are taking things out of context, and there have been a few times when I thought they were stopping or starting in odd places.

        Like

      • It’s all edited. Those with views opposed to the general direction Phil wants, are specifically not chosen when Phil asks if the audience has any questions….because it’s show biz folks! (Thus, more than a little incestuous.) Also, Phil works with various groups I, umm, wouldn’t. If you align with Phil’s selected group, good. Otherwise those with differing views are specifically excluded…so good luck pointing out anything contrary to their view. (It will just be edited out.)

        Same for the website. It’s all very….controlled.
        Including the part where you had to check your phone in at the door.

        (At least that’s how it was when I attended.)

        Like

  26. Moms Hugs says:

    Let’s not forget these “reality” shows arose when the Writers Guild went on strike for high salaries. I haven’t watched TV since because it no longer entertains. So who do you think will watch “Dr.” Phil interview of a convicted felon of a violent crime? Hint: When on sabbatical at a university years ago, I had to walk through the Student Union where a crowd watched soap operas every afternoon. They are now parents of teenagers & TV rules their family life. The results can be seen in a CDC documentary of how syphilis became an epidemic in Conyers, GA, aired by PBS about 10 yrs ago.

    Like

  27. Marilyn N says:

    How is it that the attorneys are allowing this Dr.Phil interview when a mistrial or an appeal are possible?

    Like

  28. SA Harvey says:

    I am curious to know how Dr Phil was able to view video of the actual rape, considering that this was also part of the judges order that it remain sealed. I do think that Corey is trying to show at least some remorse for his actions, both through his testimony at trial and the Dr Phil interview. It is also likely that Dr Phil paid his attorney for the interview, since he has probably been working pro bono for most of the trial. I completely agree with the previous comments regarding Brandon’s attitude, not just at trial, but throughout the entire ordeal. If Perez cannot convince him to accept responsibility, the way Corey did, he could be looking at a sentence in the higher end of the range. I am predicting that BV receives 32-35 years and CB receives 23 years. Unless, of course the judge runs them consecutively. In that case, it will be a true life sentence for both.
    Also, many thanks to Bonnie Russell for her outstanding coverage of so many aspects of this trial. It is sincerely appreciated.

    Like

  29. NJPM says:

    The only way BV gets 32-35 is by consecutive sentences. Is that really likely?

    Like

    • So many variables. Probation report, if Brandon acknowledges his crimes (which would be a first) and expresses sincere remorse. Hard to tell as Brandon’s quite the actor. Also, mood of the area, political pressure from Vanderbilt. We’ll find out March 6th.

      Like

  30. NJPM says:

    I have heard that consecutive sentences are very rare in tennessee . The system requires specific facts or circumstances . Having said that , being convicted of 9 felonies may be enough.

    Like

  31. SA Harvey says:

    Consecutive sentences are quite rare in Tennessee, but then this case is also quite rare. In 2013, sentences in Tennessee for aggravated sexual battery averaged a little over 11 years. In 2011-12, only 11 cases (out of 139) for aggravated rape went to trial. Of those, 9 were acquitted and only 2 were found guilty. The remaining 128 cases were resolved by plea deals. The minimum sentence for BV will be 27 years and 23 years for CB. Based on the behavior displayed by BV’s defense team, as well as his complete lack of remorse, I would not be surprised to see the judge increase the minimums for BV just to make a point. Bonnie is right, we will find out on March 6th.

    Liked by 1 person

    • newprude says:

      BV has yet to speak publicly. Corey is clinging to his story of being too drunk to remember what happened. The judge has zero incentive to sentence the minimum. I’m expecting the worse.

      Like

  32. Not me. Remember, the relationships here are between the Court, and the attorneys. The Defendants (or in civil court – the litigants) are transitory. Am thinking Judge Watkins might throw Cory’s attorney a bone.

    Like

  33. SA Harvey says:

    Look for BV to speak at the sentencing hearing on March 6th, along with several others. With the motion to overturn the verdict based on the jury foreman’s failure to reveal a past sexual assault and the issue of who leaked the videos to ABC, Judge Watkins will have a pretty full docket. He really does not have as much discretion in sentencing as one might expect. The guidelines for moving from the minimum (15 years on ag rape and 8 years on ag sexual battery) to the maximum sentence (60 years on ag rape and 15 on ag sexual battery) are clearly spelled out and the length of the sentence is primarily due to any prior convictions. BV will receive additional time due to his convictions on counts 8 and 9, but the fact that neither defendant has a prior criminal record seems to be the only thing working in their favor at this point.

    Like

  34. Vandenburg has a prior charge in CA. Not sure what will happen to that.

    Like

  35. SA Harvey says:

    It will most likely be quite some time before Vandenburg is able to return to Palm Desert to answer on the assault charge, but it could possibly count against him. I agree that Judge Watkins will consider the conduct of each defense team and could possibly give Worrick Robinson some credit for his attempts to keep things civil. On a side note, Robinson was very disappointed with the way the Dr Phil interview turned out. Apparently, he does not know Dr Phil very well! Because of the tactics of Perez and the other members of Vandenburg’s defense team, I do think that Judge Watkins will be looking for every conceivable argument to give BV as much time as possible. However, he will also be cognizant of the fact that an appellate court will be reviewing the entire case (including the sentencing) and could possibly overturn a sentence that is deemed too harsh.

    Like

  36. I’ve said all along I believe Brandon’s California assault charge will be “Dismissed in the interests of justice.” Meaning CA isn’t remotely interested in spending any court time and extradition costs for someone who is going away for a long time. However that Brandon couldn’t be bothered to keep his nose clean while out on bail will Definitely go against him. My sens of Judge Watkins is that of a fair, judge. Am not of the opinion the Appeals Court will be looking to over-turn anything he hands out. But for appearances, the attorneys will have to file an appeal. Last, Worrick Robinson didn’t do his client or himself any favors by agreeing to sit down for Phil. Oh well.

    Like

  37. SA Harvey says:

    I know that you have seen other cases where defense attorneys turned to book deals as a way to get paid. What is your take on the possibility of a book deal for anyone involved with this trial? Are you aware of any specific instruction from Judge Watkins preventing this? Just curious. Also wondering if you plan on covering Fletcher Long’s upcoming extortion case. Would love to hear your take on that case. The trial is expected to begin in early May.

    Like

    • My take is they’ve been organizing their notes all along. Book deals are plentiful during the trial, not during the appeals. As I tell my clients,

      “News is news when it’s new.”

      Part of my job when working with people, (as opposed to attorneys, my usual client base) is to again, get to the reality behind their claims. Which explains why I’ve sometimes had to work against former clients. It happens. So far it’s happened to me twice. As far as Fletch Long goes, my opinion of him, based on this, remains low.

      Also, (on behalf of my clients who were duped by their crooked attorneys) having helped send a couple of attorneys to prison, am not very much surprised upon discovering some attorneys are crooks. However, because some DAs are lazy or not very smart, people hire me to help convince DAs to file charges against the crooked attorneys.

      So far, so good!

      Only one death threat! 🙂

      Meanwhile, I’ve asked a Nashville attorney to comment on some questions where local views are needed. Hope to the responses, soon.

      Like

  38. NJPM says:

    Four questions:
    What will BV face in jail from white gangs for helping three blacks rape or apparently observe a rape (McKenzie) a white woman? I can’t imagine that will go well for him . A sex criminal plus a serious racial issue to address in prison.
    What will happen to Miles Finely, in all probability ? Probation or jail?
    What will Tip McKenzie likely plea to and how much time?
    What will Brandon Banks likely plea to and how much time?

    Like

    • Am thinking Vandenburg might do okay in prison, because everyone loves football. However, I don’t think he has any idea – any clue at all about, the kind of really toxic, stupid white hate, white supremacists demonstrate for anyone other than themselves.

      The largest white supremacist prison gang in Tennessee is the Aryan Nations. Vandenburg ought to study their main symbol which is the image of a rounded Celtic Cross with different symbols in each of the quadrants formed by the circle and the cross. It may or may not include initials AN, the number 14/88, SS lightning bolts, prison bars, stars from the Confederate flag, swastikas, and other symbols. Sur-13 is a Mexican gang. All gangs recruit from prison. We’ll see.

      As for Miles Finley, can’t say as I can’t quite decide how I’m going to cover him. But likely, slithering eel that he is, Miles will slither away. However, in life, Miles seems to have peaked in high school.

      Can’t answer your other questions. Only time will tell.

      Like

  39. Moms Hugs says:

    Hmmm… all good comments from readers & Bonnie. IMHO, BV will be seen by black prison gangs as responsible for ‘their football hero bros’ getting sucker-punched by inviting their bros to rape a victim that HE provided while taping them in the act, & then distributing the videos as porn – live no less – to his white buddies. Me thinks BV will get sucker-punched himself quite a lot in prison. I may be wrong since I’m not familiar with prisons, but I do know racial hatred is a 2-way street.

    Like

  40. Moms Hugs says:

    Anyone want to venture a guess whether BV’s old school buddies ever visit him in TN’s prison?

    Like

  41. NJPM says:

    What I find amazing is that all knew immediately that they had a problem. The concern and cover up started within seconds after the last rape video had been emailed . Drunk , victims of a campus culture or whatever , they all knew they had a problem that night. The call BV made to Quinzio. The video of BV covering the camera. The texts from Boyd and Finley. Prileau leaving the room. All of the football players coming to the room after BV called them and started (no doubt) immediately blaming Batey. Placing the victim in the hall. BV leaving after the victim was placed back in his room. BV knew he was in deep by 3:10 AM. So, why would this not have occurred to him at say 2:35? Some people are too stupid to be free and he is one of them. If you are that dumb then you need to be locked up.

    Like

    • newprude says:

      That’s the part I’m confused about. At what point did it register that they were all in deep. After they finished attacking the victim? Or later on when they noticed the reaction of other people. Did corey head home? Or did the “meeting” happen that night? It’s so confusing. That’s why Corey’s amnesia seems like such a blatant lie if finger pointing began before they went to bed that night.

      Like

      • NJPM says:

        It probably started that night, in the hall, with all of the football players standing there. Something like “dude, you guys raped her?!” After hearing that, panic really set in. The fact that the victim was known to many athletes already was another problem. BV was probably saying “dude , I never touched her dude. It was Batey and those guys,, not me dude. See, look here, I ‘ll send you the tape, dude.” What a dumb sh;t he is.

        Like

  42. wlm says:

    Will the victim be at the sentencing and if so do you think he will apologize to her?

    Like

  43. Marty B says:

    It’s interesting that BV remains silent while Batey goes on with Dr. Phil and engages in a character rehab project. Batey’s amnesia story is not believable in my opinion. Even his “that’s not me” explanation of his actions rings untrue especially considering the fact that within minutes of seeing the victim for the 1st time he unrepentantly rapes her and then to add further insult urinates on her. Just as unimaginable is BV encouraging people he barely knows to come on in and rape his girlfriend on camera. To totally violate a person’s trust either way is sickening. My sense is that Batey regrets his stupidity. I think BV just regrets he got caught and thinks it was no big deal. I would give Batey around 20 years. For BV, I would give him whatever the max available is. I read it here earlier… We don’t need trash like that in our society.
    Praise to the victim for being so brave in seeing this whole thing through.

    Like

  44. sentencing pushed back to april 24th due to attorney schedule conflict according to The Vanderbilt Student Newspaper.

    Like

    • michael says:

      Does anyone have any information as to whether the sentencing will be televised live?

      I’m also looking to see if anyone has video of the two rapist actually being led from the courtroom to jail. The only video I’ve found stops when Batey hugs his attorney.

      Thank you.

      Like

  45. Pingback: The Ick Factor: CBS continues protecting Jacob Robbins, Sean MacDonald and Adam Nagel from their sex crime tweeted intentions | Media and the courts

  46. Pingback: Bond hearing for Ex Vanderbilt Football Brandon Vandenburg and Corey Batey | Media and the courts

  47. Mrs. Ronald L. White says:

    After hearing the Vanderbilt case, I told my daughter that her daughter should go to a local college. Whatever happened to
    chivalry? A girls date is supposed to be her protector, not her abuser. He should
    apologize to his date (which he didn’t do),
    and I hope no girl will ever trust him or any
    of the other football players involved. I hope their Dads informed them that was a
    Very Indecent Act! Nothinge to be proud of.

    Like

  48. WOW is all can really say. I ran across this site via familylawcourts.com The posts here pretty much says it all about humanity. Women in this country have about as much dignity as …well I can equate it to this video …maybe the people who risk their own lives in this video are a better example than the self centered narcissistic backwards thought process laid out in some of the comments here. This blog sure was an eyeopener. This video is an example of a true man/doctor/protector of women and children and having a priority that ranks above football.

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/escaping-isis/

    Like

    • Janet Marlette says:

      The comments on this page are regarding a self-involved little idiot who drugged a woman and offered her to be raped an violated by a group of like-minded self-involved idiots, who proceeded to yuk it up while they did unimaginable things to her, and then her lovely boyfriend told her she got drunk and he had to take care of her, so she would feel guilty, instead of taking responsibility for the horrendous betrayal he had heaped on someone who trusted him. So rather than being appalled by this, you would prefer that we turn away from it and watch the hero in your video instead, while you insult the women who are repulsed, saying that we have no dignity? You are part of the problem, and you can stuff your little hero video.

      Like

  49. nadi1010 says:

    I randomly found this blog. There is a new development in the case. Apparently Vandenburg flushed the condoms down the toilet, saying he had done this before, and that someone he knew had “beat a rape case” by doing that. You know who that person was? His FATHER.

    http://www.newschannel5.com/news/local-news/cross-examination-continues-in-batey-retrial

    Like

  50. Steve jobs says:

    would be pretty hard to gain Rape a 6-6 260 pound titend who should be playing pro football right now lost everything in a matter of minutes.

    Like

    • No Steve Graham. Brondon Vandenburg should not be playing football right now.

      But thanks for demonstrating your attitude of complete disregard for women, is likely what contributes to women being gang-raped.
      Also, Brandon didn’t “lose everything in a matter of minutes.” On the contrary. Brandon spent a good amount of time facilitating a gang-rape, and even more time, trying to cover his tracks. Hence the Obstruction of Justice, charges.

      For an “Honor” Student, Brandon remains, stick dumb.

      Interesting that you, Steve, have 13 domain sites affiliated with “Pains All Gone” but remain so callous towards women.
      but thanks for being the elder poster guy for not moving to the Palm Desert and Palm Springs area. Appreciate the warning!

      Like

  51. Sue Martinez says:

    I hope Judge Monte Watkins will do the right thing and sentence Brandon Vandenberg to the max. BV has no remorse for the victim and he will never be reformed.

    Like

  52. SA Harvey says:

    The way sentencing works in Tennessee is that Judge Watkins starts at the mid point of the range for the most serious offense. That puts him at 20 years for both Batey and Vandenburg. He will then listen to testimony at the sentencing hearing from family members, character witnesses (many thought it was unusual that Batey had his former teacher testify as a character witness during his trial) and whomever else the defense thinks could move the sentence toward the minimum of 15 years. Then the prosecutor has the same ability to persuade Judge Watkins to move the sentence toward the maximum of 25 years by calling the victim, bringing up how Vandenburg committed a misdemeanor in California while out on bail, etc….. Gut feeling is that since this is the first felony conviction for both, the sentence will fall pretty close to 20 years. Then the state will sit down with the attorneys for Banks and McKenzie and present a deal that gives them similar jail time. Expect McKenzie to receive consideration for his testimony in all three trials, so his sentence will probably be reduced. One small thing came out of Vandenburg’s trial. In the text exchange with Joey Quinzio, he shares that he was planning to have sex on the night in question. Quinzio replies, “call me during” and Vandenburg agrees to do so. Seems to me that these boys had a little game going on with each other where they got their dates so drunk (or drugged) that they passed out and then shared video of the sex act with each other. I will never be convinced that June 23, 2013 was the first time that Vandenburg had done this. Maybe the gang rape aspect was new to him, but his behavior was too calculated to think he had never been in this situation before. He also knew after the fact that what he had done was serious as he immediately destroyed evidence and concocted the cover up story with his teammates. Tom Thurman, Jan Norman and Roger Moore got a serial rapist off the streets and did everyone in Tennessee and California a real solid favor. I will forever be grateful to them and the jury from Memphis for their diligence in seeing this through trial to the only logical conclusion.

    Like

    • Moms Hugs says:

      I completely agree with SA Harvey’s analysis & sentiment in the above post!!

      Like

    • If Only I could *star* this, I would!

      Like

    • You’re welcome! Also, I agree. Brandon Vandenburg didn’t ask any questions, such as “Really?” Or, “Why would I want to do that?” when Q said to call him “during.”

      Also seems to be in line with what I’ve heard about Brandon’s father.

      In another area, received a call from a UK reporter….they don’t get the difference of sentences between Brock Turner and likely what Brandon Vandenburg will receive.

      Separately, what bothers me about Vandenburg’s attorney, is:

      Brandon dated Perez’s daughter for years. So Perez clearly knows what he’s like. But then, Perez has always given me the creeps. So there’s that.

      Like

  53. SA Harvey says:

    Thank you Bonnie and Moms Hugs! It is always nice to have agreement on various theories that my mind conjures up. Too many things that happened before and immediately after the gang rape make it difficult for me to think this was the first time BV was in this predicament. The only first was the diligence of the Nashville police detectives that were relentless in pursuing Quinzio’s cell phone and computer to uncover the video. I also find it disturbing that the victim was in BV’s dorm room for 32 minutes, yet the entire video was only 47 seconds. Only God and the four rapist know what else happened during the remaining time. On a side note, Batey tried to fire his attorney, Worrick Robinson just a week before his sentencing, but Judge Watkins did not allow it and the sentencing is still set for Friday the 15th. BV will have to wait until the end of September to find out his fate, but he will have a pretty good idea of the length of his sentence after Friday.

    Like

  54. SA Harvey says:

    This just in…….Cory Batey sentenced to 15 years on the ag rape charge and 8 years on the ag sexual assault charge to serve concurrently. Since ag rape is a 100% to serve sentence in Tennessee, he will serve 15 years in state prison. This was the minimum that Judge Watkins could impose, so is considered a small victory for the defense team.

    Like

  55. christopher loman says:

    disgusting

    Like

  56. SA Harvey says:

    I would imagine that there will be appeals on both sides. The DA has already stated that they were very disappointed with the sentence, based on the facts of the case. Judge Watkins took the easy way out and seems to be willing to allow the appellate court to intervene.

    Like

  57. dglavin96 says:

    I’d read elsewhere that the presumptive sentence for the aggravated rape count was 20 years, as stated in your earlier post. It’s hard to grasp how Watkins got down to the minimum given the facts of this case. I’d assume the judge has discretion and it will be difficult for the DA to successfully challenge the sentence.

    I’m thankful Watkins didn’t have discretion to go below the minimum and that Batey will serve 100% of his sentence. He probably would have gotten less time if these crimes had been committed most other states, including my own state of CT. Years ago, there was a high profile case here involving a high school wrestler named Alex Kelly, who raped 2 young girls within 4 days. With the help of his parents, Kelly fled to Europe after his arrest and lived the high life there for 7 years. He only returned to face the charges when his parents were about to be indicted for obstruction. He was convicted in one case and took a plea in the other, and wound up only serving 10 years of a 17 year sentence.

    Like

  58. Watkins threw away his reputation. I only hope there is an appeal.
    I remember the Kelly case. CT officials were great with that case.

    Like

  59. kontiki says:

    I was greatly disappointed when Batey was given the absolute minimum for his grotesque actions. I did expect that the judge would allow some leeway to give Vandenburg a higher sentence to drive home the fact that even though he didn’t actually physically sexually assault the young lady that he was clearly the ringleader of her tormentors and he must be held to a higher standard because she looked upon him as her boyfriend and would have every reason to expect him to protect her not serve her up to be defiled by 3 of his teammates. I had hoped that Batey would get near the max of 25 years and Vandenburg would get the max plus 5 years for his betrayal. The fact that he had her convinced that he was the victim who took care of her that terrible night to sway her to have sex with him the next day shows without a doubt that he is a psychopath from whom society needs protection. Why charge them with 7 felonies if they only have to serve a sentence based on only one?

    Why is it that McKenzie & Banks have not gone to trial yet? I have heard very little about their involvement. What should we expect as an outcome? What about the guys in California? The lowlife on the upper bunk should be found guilty of inhumanity.

    Thanks for this blog, Bonnie Russell.

    Like

    • You’re welcome. My feeling is the DA is losing interest. But I don’t know for sure.
      The others are football players and given Coach Franklin couldn’t beat feet out-of-town, fast enough, and Judge Watkins has signaled his favoritism for rapists; seems to me the plan is for this heinous crime to slowly sink into the sunset without the other two actually being brought to trial. After all, it’s almost football season, and that’s religion.

      Like

  60. SA Harvey says:

    Based on public opinion in Nashville, I am sorry to say that Bonnie is probably correct. The reason the original indictment included 7 counts (5 for ag rape and 2 for ag sexual battery) is that was what the grand jury recommended based on the facts. In Batey’s trial, it was a good thing that all the charges were included because they were close to a hung jury. They had one holdout that did not think he was guilty and the jury foreman was able to get him to agree to a conviction on at least one of the ag rape charges as a compromise. Without the multiple counts, he may not have had that bargaining chip. As for the other defendants, I believe that the DA has already started plea negotiations with a sentence similar to what Cory Batey received. Jaborian “Tip” Mackenzie may get some consideration, since he testified in all three trials against Batey and Vandenburg. I would guess that he will still serve time, but maybe something in the range of 7-10 years. Keep in mind, he, like Vandenburg never touched the victim. His main involvement was taking pictures with Cory Batey’s phone. He even left the room twice, once to go to the bathroom and once to call his girlfriend. I agree with the comment about the roommate, Mark Prileau. He was smart to accept the deal he was given, especially after his semen was found on the towel that was later seen wrapped around the victim when she went to the bathroom.

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  61. Well isn’t this ducky.
    “Mark Prileau. He was smart to accept the deal he was given, especially after his semen was found on the towel that was later seen wrapped around the victim when she went to the bathroom.”

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  62. SA Harvey says:

    Sorry Bonnie. My intent was not to get you ticked off all over again! This came out in Vandenburg’s trial from the DNA expert that examined all of the evidence taken from the crime scene. I am not implicating Prileau in any way, just sharing what was found on the towel. As I have stated before, the victim was in BV’s dorm room from 2:38 – 3:10 am. The video recovered by Detective Gish was all of 47 seconds long. That leaves 31 minutes and 13 seconds of criminal activity that has not been accounted for. It does make you wonder what else they put her through.

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  63. Moms Hugs says:

    I think BV & his buddies back in California were into making porn for themselves & each other. I also think he would’ve been wanting his roommate to like him so he shared his personal porn stash on his laptop with Prioleau not long after they put their undies away. So, we can all presume Prileau was too occupied up there on that bunk to give a fig about what was happening on the floor or to whom. These sex assault-battery-rape cases all have a familiar ring involving drugs & hard-core porn.

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  64. kontiki says:

    If I hear one more time that “if only” Banks & McKenzie had been a few minutes earlier or later leaving the fast food joint they might not have run into Vandenburg and met their fate that October night. ….. I’ll scream!! As for Batey, he might win a record for the quickest to climb aboard which “MAY” have lead to an “unintentional” tragedy. I take only little comfort that they must serve day for day but am still incensed that Batey got the VERY LEAST of the sentencing guidelines. I cannot figure out for the very life of me what mitigating actions existed on his part. There sure as hell were plenty of aggravating factors to have pushed his sentence a lot closer to the 25 year mark. I heard the anguish in the victims voice — I can only assume that the judge is deaf, stupid and a fellow member of that “lack of empathy club”. I sure hope his ssentence is appealed.

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  65. kontiki says:

    If I hear one more time that “if only” Banks & McKenzie had been a few minutes earlier or later leaving the fast food joint they might not have run into Vandenburg and met their fate that October night. ….. I’ll scream!! As for Batey, he might win a record for the quickest to climb aboard which “MAY” have lead to an “unintentional” tragedy. I take only little comfort that they must serve day for day but am still incensed that Batey got the VERY LEAST of the sentencing guidelines. I cannot figure out for the very life of me what mitigating actions existed on his part. There sure as hell were plenty of aggravating factors to have pushed his sentence a lot closer to the 25 year mark. I heard the anguish in the victims voice — I can only assume that the judge is deaf, stupid and a fellow member of that “lack of empathy club”. I sure hope his sentence is appealed.

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  66. Moms Hugs says:

    Am I the only one who suspects racial bias in Judge Watkins’ decision?
    I firmly agree with Kontiki’s post regarding weak excuses for Batey et al. The 3 of them could just as easily done the right thing for the victim – but didn’t. The entire line of defense gets me boiling!!

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  67. Moms Hugs says:

    I’m with you on what passes for journalism. When newsrooms became profit centers, producers threw out the tried & true “who, what, when, where & why” in favor of mere opining, spinning & speculating. When script writers went on strike, they threw out really good entertainment & went on the cheap with reality shows. As for radio shock jocks, well… they’re merely channeling old Joe McCarthy, which worked so well to make him a celebrity – not so well for his victims. So, where do we mere mortals begin to clean up this mess?

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  68. dglavin96 says:

    Any idea where video of the first trial can be found? I’ve looked high and low for it.

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  69. dglavin96 says:

    I searched youtube extensively before posing the question and could not find the first trial. I was hoping the video could be found somewhere else. You mentioned reddit in a post several months ago, but I couldn’t find it there either.

    Like

  70. Will this help you find it?
    It’s a string leading to Cory Batey apologizing during the first trial. Which I watched, live.http://www.cbs5az.com/story/27940329/defendant-in-vanderbilt-rape-trial-expected-to-testify

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