In an interview with the Washington Post, a registered sex offender who was given a mere three months in prison by Supreme Court Judge nominee Ketanji Brown Jackson thanked the soft-on-crime judge for his lenient sentence.
In 2013, then-19-year-old Wesley Hawkins was convicted of possessing child pornography in which boys 8-to-12 years old were depicted in sex acts. Federal sentencing guidelines called for Hawkins to receive 8-10 years in prison, but prosecutors took into account his lack of criminal history and requested two years in prison. Hawkins’ defense team requested a single day in jail and five years of supervision. Jackson sentenced him to three months in prison, three months of home confinement, and six years of supervision.
In 2019, Hawkins was ordered by Jackson to complete his supervised release at a halfway house because he had been searching “sexually arousing, non-pornographic material and images of males 13 to 16-years-old” and was highly likely to re-offend.
“I wasn’t very happy that she gave me three months, though after reflection when I was in jail, I was hearing from other people who said it was their first time arrested and they got five years, six years,” Hawkins said in his interview. “I feel that she chose to take into consideration the fact that I was just getting started [in life] and she knew this was going to hold me back for years to come ,regardless, so she didn’t really want to add on to that.”
At her confirmation hearing, Jackson was asked if she regretted sentencing Hawkins to only three months. She dodged the issue entirely: “What I regret is that in a hearing about my qualifications to be a justice on the Supreme Court, we’ve spent a lot of time focusing on this small subset of my sentences and I’ve tried to explain,” Jackson said.