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Lawyer In Ohio Rape Case:

16-Year-Olds Don't Have

Fully Developed Brains

3/19/2013 6:02 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

031913_pierce_morgan_launch
Ma'Lik Richmond -- one of the high school football players convicted of rape in Steubenville, Ohio -- shouldn't be forced to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life because he's only 16 ... and therefor doesn't have a fully developed brain ... this according to Richmond's lawyer.

Walter Madison went on "Piers Morgan" last night and told the CNN host why he plans to appeal the case -- in which Richmond was sentenced to at least one year in juvenile prison for raping a 16-year-old girl with his fingers at a high school party.

As part of the punishment, Richmond will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life ... something Madison says is completely unfair. 

"I don't believe that a person at 75 years old should have to explain for something they did at 16 when scientific evidence would support your brain isn't fully developed ... when evidence in the case would suggest that you were under the influence."

Translation -- if you're underage and might do something stupid, make sure you get drunk first ... so you have an excuse and can't be held completely responsible.

After the comment, Morgan immediately fired back with rational thought -- saying, "I got 3 teenage sons and when you get to 16, 17 ... your brain's developed enough to know you shouldn't be raping girls."

BTW -- Richmond's brain seems to be more developed than the one in his lawyer's head ... 'cause the kid issued an emotional apology to the family of the girl in open court, acknowledging he did something wrong.

202 COMMENTS

No Avatar
76.

AnnaR    

Oh please. They are only sorry that they got caught. They knew exactly what they were doing. Bragged about - posted that crap on social media. Don't even go there! Lock em up for a long, long time.

581 days ago
77.

StarryStarryNight    

a piece of sh*t who hired a piece of sh*t for a lawyer.

581 days ago
78.

_][ Character_Assassin ][_    

So, 16 year olds without a fully developed head is allowed to play football where concussions run rampant... gotcha.

581 days ago
79.

JA    

Sports athletes always get preferred treatments, from grade school onto adulthood. However, I am surprise at the coverage of CNN, very slanted with saying like, “poor boys” to “lives ruined by verdict” As someone, said in another forum, “they’re ruined their lives by their behavior”. The court is just holding them accountable for their actions.
Needless to say, I am very disappointed in CNN, I am actively looking for another source for news.

581 days ago
80.

gbtw    

parents need to teach their kids about these things. yah, we all know about rape being wrong- but parents of boys have to have a really serious talk with their children about the concept of consent- and to stay away from intoxicated individuals who cannot give it. i don't think parents have these conversations with their boys... or at least, most of them. the conversation also needs to include how to help their friends if they see them getting into a situation- all they need to say is that it isn't a good idea to be getting too close to a drunk girl. period.

581 days ago
81.

A viewer    

He's crying because he got caught and will probably now be some other punk's girlfriend for the next year.

581 days ago
82.

Lola    

In many cultures, the father of such a girl would have hunted down these animals and killed them, and nobody would stop him. America is not a "punishment" society. It is a "be kind to the villain" society.

581 days ago
83.

lil    

That's ridiculous. Throw the book at these criminals. And then double it.

581 days ago
84.

lil    

If they don't know the difference between right and wrong at the age of 16 or 17, and if that is defensible, then throw their parents in jail for not teaching them the difference between right and wrong at that age. That might make some people take notice.

581 days ago
85.

NOT ELMO    

Lawyer In Ohio Rape Case:
16-Year-Olds Don't Have
Fully Developed Brains.......JUST THEY DO !

581 days ago
86.

Billythekid_96    

Yeah only sorry cause u got caught

581 days ago
87.

JDoors    

A five-year-old's brain is even less developed than a teenagers, but you still hold them responsible for their actions (writing on the walls, breaking their siblings toys, eating their peas, etc.).


DO YOU KNOW RIGHT FROM WRONG is the question, not whether or not your brain CAN develop further.


Nice try though.

581 days ago
88.

Bagheera    

Is Ohio Health class that different from Minnesota Health class? At age 10 I knew that drugs are bad, you should not have sex with someone on drugs, and always use protection.
---
Maybe he should have paid more attention in class during the D.A.R.E. lectures and less time day dreaming about football.

581 days ago
89.

debbiedoesnothing    

It's true that 16-17 year old brains aren't fully developed. There is scientific research to back that up. However, these boys brains were developed enough to know they were doing something wrong. If you read the transcripts from the text messages they sent afterwards, they knew they were in deep s**t and tried to cover up their crimes.

BTW, they attacked her with more than just their fingers. They were only charged with digital penetration because much of the evidence had been destroyed.

581 days ago
90.

Guest535353    

I remember being 16 and I am definitely more mature now. However, not only did these boys rape this girl. They posted a 12 minute video laughing about it, calling her names, bragging. Then continued to tweet about it and post pictures. They knew FULLY well what they were doing, they just were "popular" and did not care. I'll say what I always say...if it was this lawyers daughter who got raped, I highly doubt that he'd say " well, they were too young to know better." BULL SH!T.

581 days ago
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