Brock Turner is a free man once again.
The former Stanford swimmer who was at the heart of a firestorm over a judge’s lenient punishment earlier this year was released from jail Friday after serving three months of his six-month sentence.
Turner, 21, left the Santa Clara County Jail in Northern California alone just after 6 a.m. PT, carrying a brown paper bag and his jacket tucked underneath his arm, NBC News reported. He did not speak to reporters and was then taken away by a waiting car.
Turner was convicted of three felony counts for sexually assaulting an intoxicated and unconscious woman in 2015 at a fraternity party on the Stanford campus. His case sparked outrage in January when Judge Aaron Persky handed down what many believed to be an extremely light sentence considering the severity of the crime.
Turner will now have to attend drug and alcohol counseling and receive random testing under the terms of his three year probation. According to the Chicago Tribune, “the 21-year-old must register as a sex offender for life and faces three years of supervised probation.” NBC reports that Turner is expected to return home to Ohio.
Turner got an angry sendoff from California, as rape survivors and activists gathered outside the San Jose courthouse Friday to protest the short sentence for a crime that could have gotten him 14 years in jail.
“This kind of unfair and unreasonable and unjustifiable sentencing is not going to be tolerated any longer,” said Jacqueline Lin, a 21-year-old student who says she was sexually assaulted while at Stanford, The Guardian reported.
Turner’s victim, who was 22 at the time of the attack and has not been identified, read an emotional statement to Turner in court, questioning whether the probation officer’s recommendation of a year or less in county jail was severe enough — and referencing Turner’s statement in which he said, “I never want to experience being in a position where it will have a negative impact on my life or someone else’s ever again.”
“You said, I want to show people that one night of drinking can ruin a life,” she said. “A life, one life, yours, you forgot about mine. Let me rephrase for you, I want to show people that one night of drinking can ruin two lives. You and me. You are the cause, I am the effect.”
A petition on Change.org later demanded that Judge Persky vacate the bench in Santa Clara County Superior Court. It currently has almost 1.3 million signatures.
Persky recently said that he is leaving his current position and moving to civil court.
See NBC News’ video of Turner being released below.