Convicted Rapist Of Multiple Girls Freed, Judge Says Jail ‘Isn’t Appropriate’

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A man convicted of raping or sexually abusing four girls faced multiple years in prison for his crimes. However, he walked free when the judge explained to the victims why “incarceration isn’t appropriate.”

Christopher Belter walked free after a series of sex crimes occurred in his parents’ New York mansion. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

With the evidence stacked against him, 20-year-old Christopher Belter pleaded guilty to raping one young girl and sexually abusing three others over the course of a year. Incredibly, thanks to the New York judge’s sympathy, he won’t even set foot inside of a prison cell for any of his crimes.

The victims of Belter are tormented by the fact that their sexual abuser will not be jailed for his actions. However, it’s the judge who claims he personally suffered immense agony which ultimately led him to allow the convicted rapist to walk free.

Christopher Belter
Christopher Belter received just eight years of probation. (Photo Credit: Niagra County Sheriff’s Office)

According to WKBW, Niagara County Court Judge Matthew J. Murphy III said in front of Belter and his victims that he “agonized” over whether or not to imprison the rapist. He then announced that Belter would receive no jail time and just eight years of probation for his crimes because jailing him wouldn’t be an “appropriate sentence.”

Judge Murphy went on to say that he came to his decision based on the rapist’s age at the time of the crimes. Belter was just 16 or 17 when he raped a teen girl and sexually abused three others, whose ages ranged from 15 to 16 years.

“I agonized — I’m not ashamed to say that I actually prayed over what is the appropriate sentence in this case. because there was great pain. There was great harm — There were multiple crimes committed in the case,” Judge Murphy explained. “It seems to me that a sentence that involves incarceration or partial incarceration isn’t appropriate, so I am going to sentence you to probation.”

Christopher Belter
Judge Matthew J. Murphy III rejected the idea of prison, claiming that “incarceration isn’t appropriate.” (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

Belter was formally charged with first-degree rape, third-degree rape, and sexual abuse involving multiple minors when he was only 17 years old. The abuse occurred over the course of a year at his home in Lewiston. He later pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree sex abuse, third-degree attempted abuse, and third-degree rape.

Although Belter is required to register as a sex offender, he received a sentence of two years interim probation which, if completed, will earn him Youthful Offender status. His probation restrictions include no contact with minors, living with his parents, employment or full-time student status, and no internet.

“It’s going to be like a sword hanging over your head for the next eight years,” Judge Murphy remarked.

Christopher Belter
Steve Cohen, attorney for one of the victims, blames Christopher Belter’s race and economic status for his freedom. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

Belter’s victims learned in court that he would receive no jail time. Understandably, they were shocked and disgusted with the judge’s decision. One of the victim’s attorneys attributed the merciful sentence to Belter’s race and economic status.

“I am deeply, deeply disappointed. I expected a different outcome today,” declared Steve Cohen, attorney. “Justice was not done today. He is privileged. He comes from money. He is white. He was sentenced as an adult, appropriately — for an adult to get away with these crimes is unjust.”

Cohen pointed out that although Belter received strict probation, he had already violated the conditions of his previous probation and received only a slap on the wrist. Even then, Judge Murphy excused Belter’s behavior, insisting that he “has made progress” and might be at a lower risk of reoffending if he takes counseling.

While the judge “agonized” over sentencing Christopher Belter to prison, the victims are forced to live in agony over their abuser evading justice. (Photo Credit: Screenshot)

Addressing the court before his sentencing, Belter apologized to his victims and said that he feels “deep shame and regret” for his actions. Of course, many aren’t buying his apology. Like his victims, they believe that he has only been taught by the court that he will get away with his crimes.

Sentences aren’t just imposed to punish the offender. They are also to avenge the victim. However, instead of avenging the suffering inflicted upon these girls, the judge “agonized” over punishing their abuser.