A florida lesbian 18-year-old, has rejected the plea deal she was offered, after being charged with felony offences for having a relationship with a girl four years younger than her.
Kaitlyn Hunt faces felony charges after the mother of her girlfriend, aged 14, notified police of the relationship as soon as she turned 18.
She has been charged with two counts of lewd and lascivious battery of a child 12 to 16 years of age and has been expelled from Sebastian River High School, in the town of Sebastian, Florida.
If she had chosen to accept the plea deal, she would have been under house arrest for two years, and would have been labelled a sex offender.
The state attorney’s office now says she will face trial on 20 June, and could face up to 15 years in prison, if she were to be found guilty of the offences.
The attorney acting on behalf of Ms Hunt, Julia Graves, said she thought her client was being treated unfairly, and cited a case in 2011, when an 18-year-old male, who had sex with a 15-year-old female, was charged with lewd and lascivious battery, but the charge was dropped down to a misdemeanor battery case.
Campaigners have condemned the arrest, and have stood by Ms Hunt, urging authorities to drop the charges.
The hacker collective named Anonymous, have issued a threat that they will raise hundreds of thousands of signatures calling for the resignation of the State Attorney, to step down, unless he drops the charges.
A full statement from Ms Hunt’s attorneys is available to read below.
Our client is a courageous teenager who is choosing not to accept the current plea offer by the State of Florida.
This is a situation of two teenagers who happen to be of the same sex involved in a relationship. If this case involved a boy and girl, there would be no media attention to this case.
Our client is a model citizen. She has been placed in an environment of school with her classmates where they go to school together, have lunch together, and play on the same team and are allowed to have communication and contact without barriers. Then when something develops between the two as a result of this environment created by the State, it leads to criminal prosecution.
If this incident occurred 108 days earlier when she was 17, we wouldn’t even be here.
Right now this is the biggest thing in her life. We are going to stand behind her. Her family and friends are going to stand behind her.
This is not logical. The State is willing to take this teenager’s life away over 108 days.
Along with Kaitlyn and her family, we are going to fight to have the law changed so no other teenager finds themselves in this same position created by the State of Florida and prosecuted unfairly.
Now we as counsel need to get down to the serious business of fighting for this teenager’s life.