The lawyer for Brock Turner, the American ex-student convicted of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman in 2015, has launched an appeal to overturn those charges on the premise that Turner did not intend to rape the woman and only commited so-called "outercourse." .
Brock Turner served three months in jail and was released in September of 2016.
Local news station WHIO reports that appellate attorney Erick Multhaup on Tuesday told a three-justice appeals panel that his client never meant to sexually assault the unconscious woman and was instead only committing what he described as "sexual outercourse", which he described as a variant of "safe sex".
Three judges listened as the 22-year-old's lawyer explained Turner wanted to have "outercourse" - a fully-clothed sexual interaction - instead of intercourse.
"I absolutely don't understand what you are talking about", Justice Franklin D. Elia said to Multhaup.
Justices Elia, Adrienne Grover and Wendy Duffy will now have 90 days to make a decision on the appeal.
The case catapulted Turner and Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Aaron Persky into the global spotlight, with the high-profile judicial recall campaign branding the men as the faces of rape culture.
Alaleh Kianerci, the district attorney who successfully prosecuted Turner's case, was present for Tuesday's hearing.
He said the evidence against Turner was circumstantial and was insufficient to convict beyond a reasonable doubt. It was Multhaup's opinion that Turner had no intent to commit rape. He is required to register as a sex offender for life. The three justices at Tuesday's oral argument reminded Multhaup that the objective of an appellate court is not to question the jury's verdict retrospectively.
Multhaup also said Doe was capable of walking when she and Turner left the party together and that "the jury had to speculate that she [Emily Doe] was incapacitated" at the time of the assault about a half hour later.
Alisha Carlile, an attorney representing the state of California, highlighted trial testimony that said bystanders "could tell from 30 feet away" the victim was unconscious. "You can't surgically remove things and look at them separately".
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