Genarlow Wilson released from prison

October 26, 2007

FORSYTH, Ga. (AP) -- After two years of being imprisoned for having consensual oral sex with another teenager, Genarlow Wilson was released this evening.

A throng of family members, including his mother, Juannessa Bennett, were waiting outside Al Burruss Correctional Training Center when the 21-year-old emerged from the prison.

The Georgia Supreme Court ruled 4-3 today that the ten-year sentence Wilson received was cruel and unusual punishment and ordered his release.

Wilson told a news conference outside the prison, "I'm finally happy to see we've got justice now."

He said that among his immediate goals was to get into college.

His attorney, B.J. Bernstein, said, "His mother is just thrilled. We're all in a little bit of shock."

Wilson was convicted of aggravated child molestation following a 2003 New Year's Eve party at a Douglas County hotel room where he was videotaped having oral sex with a 15-year-old girl. He was 17 at the time.

Wilson was acquitted of raping another 17-year-old girl at the party.

The 1995 law Wilson violated was changed in 2006 to make oral sex between teens close in age a misdemeanor, similar to the law regarding teen sexual intercourse. But the state Supreme Court later upheld a lower court's ruling which said that the 2006 law could not be applied retroactively.

Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears wrote in the majority opinion Friday that the changes in the law were a "seismic shift in the legislature's view" of oral sex between two willing teenage participants.

Copyright 2007 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


WRDW.com is happy to provide a forum for commenting and discussion. Please respect and abide by the house rules:

Keep it clean, keep it civil, keep it truthful, stay on topic, be responsible, share your knowledge, and please suggest removal of comments that violate these standards.

powered by Disqus
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1212 Augusta, GA 30903 Main Telephone: (803) 278-1212 Newsroom: (803) 278-3111 Fax: (803) 442-4561
Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 10816581 - wrdw.com/a?a=10816581
Gray Television, Inc.