Child Abuse

Horrifying du Pont Heir Case Proves The Affluenza Defense Works For Baby Rapists, Too

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1396212401000-wildc5-6ehdlb201ybix4mc8ky-originalHope you had a great weekend, because I am about to destroy your faith in everything – and probably send you back to bed. A wealthy Du Pont heir was sentenced to probation for raping his three-year-old daughter, because the judge thinks聽he “will not fare well” in prison. Since when do we care about that? The guy isn’t old or dying – he’s a child rapist.

Robert H. Richards IV, one of the heirs to the Du Pont fortune, was initially indicted on two counts of second-degree rape of a child – a Class B violent felony that carries a mandatory 10-year prison term for each count. Delaware Online reports that “in June 2008, just days before a scheduled trial, prosecutor Renee Hrivnak offered Richards a plea to a single count of fourth-degree rape, which carries no mandatory time, and he accepted, admitting in court that he abused his child.” He initially denied the charges, but after failing a lie detector test admitted to the rape: “Later while taking another lie detector test, he all but admitted to the abuse of his son.”

The 2009 case became public this month after his ex-wife filed a lawsuit seeking “compensatory and punitive damages” for the abuse of his daughter. The lawsuit accuses him of admitting to sexually abusing his infant son between 2005 and 2007, the same time period that he admitted to abusing his daughter starting at the age of three. Police investigated the allegations regarding the infant son in 2010, but claimed to not have enough evidence to file charges.

Judge Jan Jurden decided on an eight-year prison term for Richards, but suspended all the prison time for probation:

“Defendant will not fare well in Level 5 setting,” said the final line of her sentencing order. In Delaware’s correctional system, Level 5 is prison.

Joseph S. Grubb, chief New Castle County prosecutor, said he was not involved in the case, but stressed that whether Richards’ might suffer or thrive in prison was not something prosecutors considered.

“It’s not a concern for us,” Grubb said. “We try to do the right thing in each case. Absent that equation is the physical condition of the defendant.”

‘Defendant will not fare well in Level 5 setting?’ Who cares? He raped his three-year-old daughter and allegedly raped his infant son, too. He’s a child predator which means he would be segregated from the general population anyway. Oh, he’s also a monster, so why this judge decided to care about his well being at all is really suspect. Do we sentence people to prison terms because it’s in their best interests, or because they have been convicted of crimes that carry a punishment?

Defense lawyer Joseph A. Hurley said it makes sense to him that the judge would be concerned about Richards’ time in prison.

“Sure, they have protective custody, but that is solitary confinement for 23 hours a day. We’re not a third-world society,” Hurley said.

“Sex offenders are the lowest of the low in prison,” Hurley said. “He’s a rich, white boy who is a wuss and a child perv. The prison can’t protect them, and Jan Jurden knows that reality. She is right on.”

I’m just going to leave you with that. I have no words.

(photo: Delaware Online)


    • Robotic Socks

      March 31, 2014 at 4:43 pm

      Bet that judge was suffering from influenza… wait, I meant influenceza

      demnitohell!!! this joke sucked!

  1. keelhaulrose

    March 31, 2014 at 1:25 pm

    Who the fuck DOES do well in a prison setting?
    If I win the lottery I’m going to go crime crazy and buy my way out of prison because justice is for sale here.

    • Robotic Socks

      March 31, 2014 at 1:28 pm

      Gays who like surprises.

    • Angela

      March 31, 2014 at 1:35 pm

      Don’t you know that poor people just go to prison so that they can mooch off tax payers and get free healthcare and shit? It’s like a free country club. Funny thing is that everyone I’ve heard ranting about how cushy prison is would do anything to keep themselves out of it.

    • Kay_Sue

      March 31, 2014 at 1:41 pm

      My husband actually did meet a man like that when he worked as a correctional officer. The guy wasn’t looking for a cushy ride though–his kidneys were failing, and when he was in jail, he could receive dialysis that he could not afford out of jail. So every time he was released, he’d commit another offense to get incarcerated again–usually something with a shortish jail term. It makes those stereotypes all the more infuriating to me–because in the instances that they are actually true, there’s often much, much more to the story.

    • Angela

      March 31, 2014 at 3:15 pm

      Yeah, my mom works at our state prison and she knows people who do purposefully get themselves incarcerated either for medical care or simply just to get steady meals and a warm place to sleep. So I’m not denying that there’s no worse situations than prison, but that doesn’t change the fact that people with options aren’t exactly lining up to get in.

    • Kay_Sue

      March 31, 2014 at 4:06 pm

      I agree entirely. Just pointing out that the stereotypes those people come up with are awful in more ways than one, and that makes this story all the more appalling to me.

  2. Alex

    March 31, 2014 at 1:28 pm

    First, I put absolutely zero credibility to the results of “lie detectors” (actually called polygraphs) since they don’t, you know, detect lies at all.

    Second, I don’t really see this as an “affluenza defense” (as in, he didn’t appear to claim that he didn’t know better because he was never taught any consequences due to his upbringing privileged).

    Third, isn’t the entire point of a prison sentence such that the inmate “not fare well”?

    • keelhaulrose

      March 31, 2014 at 1:37 pm

      He’s a child prev and they can’t protect him? I’m strangely okay with that. It’s well known child molesters/rapists are targeted in prison. Don’t like it, don’t fucking rape children!
      If I caught someone raping my three year old this story would be about my murder trial, not their lenient sentence.

    • Allen

      March 31, 2014 at 6:29 pm

      Though it may not be presented as an affluenza defense, I think that’s essentially what it is. They’re arguing that spending 23 hours a day in solitary confinement would be harmful for this guy, which is probably true. But such consideration isn’t given to the most of the people who do have to live in such conditions in prison.

      There’s a difference between acknowledging that prison isn’t supposed to be enjoyable and supporting practices that can be dangerous or abusive to inmates, which solitary confinement can be. And prisons have a responsibility to protect the inmates, no matter what their crime is. It really bothers me to see people justify rape and murder in cases like this, because it supports the idea that rape is okay sometimes. But it’s wrong that this guy, because of his wealth and class, gets a special free pass and essentially gets off without punishment. There are problems with the prison system, so those need to be addressed. Letting violent sex offenders stay out of prison because they’re rich doesn’t fix the system.

  3. Kay_Sue

    March 31, 2014 at 1:36 pm

    You’re right. You just totally destroyed my faith in humanity. I know that’s shooting the messenger, but that doesn’t change it.

    The wellbeing of a perpetrator is the last thing that the justice system should be concerned with. I wonder how much consideration this judge spared for the child (since this sentence was only for abuse of the daughter) that was his victim and any others he might harm in the future. I’m disgusted.

  4. whiteroses

    March 31, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    So… this jackass rapes both of his children.

    And gets a free pass.

    Because he won’t do well in prison.

    Fuck this shit. I’m going back to bed.

  5. tk88

    March 31, 2014 at 1:53 pm

    Him not faring well in prison is exactly WHY they should have put him in there. I hope someone on the outside does something to him

  6. Ptownsteveschick

    March 31, 2014 at 1:57 pm

    If there are people out there who off politicians for their policies, there has to be someone willing to make this guy disappear. Just saying.

    • whiteroses

      March 31, 2014 at 1:57 pm

      “Disappearing” is too good for him. Though I’d be ok with that outcome.

    • Ptownsteveschick

      March 31, 2014 at 2:00 pm

    • whiteroses

      March 31, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    • whiteroses

      March 31, 2014 at 2:09 pm

      This may not be the time for gifs, but shit, I have to laugh a little or I may never stop crying.

    • Ptownsteveschick

      March 31, 2014 at 2:11 pm

      I agree. Gifs are better than crying.

    • Natasha B

      March 31, 2014 at 3:14 pm

      Huck or Dexter, for sure.

    • pixie

      March 31, 2014 at 3:08 pm

    • Robotic Socks

      March 31, 2014 at 4:51 pm

      Pix meant this pic

    • pixie

      March 31, 2014 at 5:01 pm

      Yeah, I fail at posting gifs, apparently. 馃槢
      Thanks, Robotic Socks. 馃榾

  7. AlexMMR

    March 31, 2014 at 2:02 pm

    Thank you for posting his picture. I want that picture with the words “Convicted baby rapist” plastered on every sign post in the country.

  8. TngldBlue

    March 31, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    What a fucking travesty.

  9. EX

    March 31, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    OK. I saw the headline and thought “I don’t think I can read this.” Then I sucked it up and read the first paragraph. Holy shit. I mean seriously. W.T.F?! I am literally turning red this is making me so angry. Now, out of respect for your writing, Maria, I will go calm the F down and try to finish reading this but I don’t know if I can…

  10. RayneofCastamere

    March 31, 2014 at 2:16 pm

    They don’t want him in prison because he won’t do well? Really? Who the hell does well in prison?! Is there anyone who gets convicted of a horrific felony and sent to jail who has a good time? I know Oz is just a TV show, but even if it’s only marginally accurate, from what I can tell prison sucks for pretty much everyone! It might as well be extra horrible for someone like this who deserves whatever he gets!

    I feel absolutely no remorse for him. None.

  11. candyvines

    March 31, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    If prison is so terrible that the very people it is meant for need to be protected from it then something needs to change. This man was supposed to protect his children and instead he raped them, the answer is not to let him get away with it.

  12. Paul White

    March 31, 2014 at 3:03 pm


  13. Jen

    March 31, 2014 at 3:06 pm

    Who wants to form an angry mob with me?

  14. Natasha B

    March 31, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    First off, throw the douche in prison where he belongs, and let someone rape him, so he can understand the consequences of his actions.
    My confusion stems from the timeline of this whole shitshow,……the abuse happened in 2005/2007, wasn’t brought to trial until 2009, he gets off scot free (anyone check the judge’s financials) and it’s not being brought to light until 2014?! I thought all trials were public, was his sealed? Why are we hearing about this now?

    • Kay_Sue

      March 31, 2014 at 4:07 pm

      His was apparently sealed until it was recently made public by his ex-wife, who is attempting to prove that he also assaulted their infant son. She’s apparently been fighting some kind of legal battle for a number of years, and was only recently able to make this public.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:12 am

      Nah, wouldn’t want anyone to stoop to his level. Strangling him at night, though, would be a pretty good thing in my book. This way he wouldn’t be able to come out and rape anyone ever again.

  15. thisshortenough

    March 31, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    He won’t do well in prison because the only thing that prisoners unite against is child killers and molesters

    • koolchicken

      March 31, 2014 at 5:41 pm

      You know there’s a very good reason for that.

    • whiteroses

      March 31, 2014 at 6:39 pm

      Honor among thieves and all that. It’s odd to think that even rapists and murderers have some standards.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:11 am

      Actually, they don’t like the plain old variety rapists either.

  16. Dixie

    March 31, 2014 at 3:42 pm

    I have an idea. Sentence him to babysit the judge’s children. Then let’s she if she cares about how he fairs in prison.

  17. Magdalena Jolanta Doerry

    March 31, 2014 at 5:38 pm

    “Will not fare well in Level 5”- translates to “Even if he’s segregated, somebody will get a hold of him and kill him in the most inhumane possible.” Which is EXACTLY what this fuck deserves.

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:06 am

      F没ck off you stupid c没nt that’s a total overreaction the baby is still alive and won’t remember a thing

    • Magdalena Jolanta Doerry

      April 1, 2014 at 3:15 am

      You have GOT to be a troll. Or a child rapist. Hopefully a troll. Because otherwise you deserve the same fate he does.

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:35 am

      Oh no no one could have an opinion other than yours slut, if you can’t win the argument pull the troll card.

  18. SarahJesness

    March 31, 2014 at 5:43 pm

    What kind of person DOES do well in prison? What a stupid argument. Besides, it’s the point of prison to punish people? (they say “rehabilitation” but we all know that’s BS) You don’t send people to prison so they can “do well”. Come on, hold everyone to the same standard here!

  19. jendra_berri

    March 31, 2014 at 7:35 pm

    So if you’re a rich white guy who’s a weenie you’re allowed to rape your babies? If it’s terribly violent and you don’t have to go to prison, you’re allowed to do it.
    Also, 23 hour solitary (SHU) is used all the time. I don’t think it’s humane long-term, but why is this guy specifically being spared? Wealth, essentially. His fucking money.

  20. Neville

    April 1, 2014 at 3:08 am

    You sl没ts in here talking about death for rape? The b卯tches that campaign against rape are always the ugly wh么res no one would bother with. And the sl没ts who parade around in short skirts are asking for it. Including young girls – a slut is a slut

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:13 am

      Go choke on your own dick, troll.

    • Magdalena Jolanta Doerry

      April 1, 2014 at 3:41 am

      Don’t worry, this idiot is harassing me too.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:46 am

      I say let’s get him banned :3

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:49 am

      No freedom of speech here! And it’s touching to see you ugly bitches bonding

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:49 am

      Reported your ass~

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:56 am

      Oh no this would be devastating for you as this is your life. I still never saw an ounce of this wit you seemed to allude to you having.

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:58 am

      Did you run and tell the teachers when the kids made fun of you as a child? Kind of reminds me of when i was at school I bullied this fat retarded girl so badly I made her life a living hell, we spat at her, physically abused her, taunted and humiliated her in front of the whole school. This went on for years until eventually one day I found her early in the morning hanging from the classroom ceiling on a noose, I was the first on the scene I just laughed out loud as she gasped and struggled around on the noose then I went and hung my whole body weight on her and her neck broke, that slut was finally dead, I hacked her down and spit on her and fingered her for a bit while I masturbated, then when the teachers arrived I pretended I was helping her and was awarded a Medal of Honour. I went to her funeral drunk with other kids and laughed outloud and chanted “fat retarded cunt is dead”, her father stepped up and was quickly taken to the ground by me. And I ended up fingering her sister. I spray painted ‘retarded fat c没nt’ onto her grave. I still visit the grave occasionally for a shit as a message to her family.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:59 am

      Keep digging 馃檪

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 4:01 am

      Wow you are like the police or something! The self proclaimed ruler of morality on disqus keeping the comment threads safe and free of free speech. Take the L you just ain’t got it ‘dearie’ …. Shame I was looking forward to some thoughtful debate but unfortunately I get you, one of limited intellect.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 4:02 am

      Thank you, I got juuust enough to get you banned.

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 4:04 am

      It’s amusing you think this bothers me when I’m banned from everywhere. You can’t compete haha

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:51 am

      Shut that cunt mouth whore id slit your fucking throat and watch you bleed out for talking to me like that in real life. I’d make you watch while I fingered your slut daughter while I masturbated as well.

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:43 am

      I’d prefer to make you choke on it, against your will sl没t.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:46 am

      Do you have anything more clever in that tiny peanut brain of yours, shitty troll?

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:50 am

      Well I was responding in kind to your genius and witty previous comment, so you pretty much set the standard for that exchange.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:52 am

      Okay, let’s make that a walnut-size brain. Still doesn’t have a semblance of wit in it, though.

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:54 am

      I’m still awaiting something worthy from you. Please proceed.

    • meteor_echo

      April 1, 2014 at 3:57 am

      I copypasted all your shit and will report you to Disqus, dearie. Hopefully your 12-year-old ass gets banned entirely :3

    • Neville

      April 1, 2014 at 3:59 am

      Haha you should call the army. You are such a power of wit and intellect and you have truly shown that on this forum.

  21. Neville

    April 1, 2014 at 3:53 am

    The mother was to blame she paraded that baby around wearing revealing clothes no wonder he got turned on.

  22. March

    April 1, 2014 at 6:06 am

    It was all for the well-being of the child, you see. Because trauma.

    “…prosecutors handling child sex cases routinely have difficulty relying
    on the testimony of youngsters, especially if the defendant is their
    father. The well-being of the child is paramount in such cases and
    parents and prosecutors are often reluctant to put children through the
    trauma of testifying and being cross-examined, he said.”

    Did you see that neat little shadow of victim-blaming in there?

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