Kansas State Rep. Mark Samsel, the conservative Christian Republican who kicked a student in the balls while working as a substitute teacher, has been given a slap on the wrist by a judge.
Even though Samsel (below) was forced to give up his substitute teaching license and said he was getting mental health treatment, there was a looming question of whether he would face any serious punishment for what he did considering he faced three misdemeanor battery charges involving child victims.
In case you need a refresher, Samsel was arrested and sent to jail in May after he allegedly assaulted the child in a classroom. The assault occurred after Samsel was recorded telling students that there was a sophomore who attempted suicide because “he has two parents and they’re both females,” that God knows when you masturbate, that students must follow “God’s rules,” and that those who didn’t obey God would “see how it’s going to turn out.”
Days after his arrest, Samsel released a batshit crazy statement refusing to accept any responsibility for his actions. In it, he argued that “if you think MY behavior in the classroom on Wednesday was inappropriate or even criminal, how about we compare it to YOUR behavior at any given PUBLIC SCHOOL (or private or home school) sporting event?” He also said “Did I intend to hurt a soul or act for a single moment out of rage, animosity, or any other element of battery? Absolutely not.”
That was a lie, based on the student’s testimony.
The deputy’s affidavit, released to reporters Tuesday, said the boy showed him a golf ball-sized “road rash” and a 3-to-4 inch scratch on his back that he said appeared after Republican state Rep. Mark Samsel, of Wellsville, pushed him up against a classroom wall on April 28.
The boy told the deputy that after Samsel pushed him against the wall and kicked him, “his back and testicles were in pain” for approximately 15 minutes, the affidavit said.
The sheriff’s deputy said in the document that he asked the lawmaker why he had put his hands on the boy, and Samsel pointed to the ceiling. When the deputy asked Samsel whether God told him to do so, Samsel answered, “Twice.”
So… God told Samsel to kick the child in the testicles. That was seriously his defense. And then he remained an elected official because that’s how Republicans operate.
And after all that, what’s his punishment? He faced up to 6 months in jail and a $3,000 fine for the three charges combined.
Instead, he’ll have to issue an apology to his victims, stay off of social media (except for political purposes), pay $0 in fines (but $263 in court costs), serve a 90-day suspended jail sentence (which means he won’t be behind bars), and be on probation for a year.
The Kansas City Star explains:
Kansas Rep. Mark Samsel can’t use personal social media and must apologize to his teenage victims, a judge ordered Monday, capping four months of court proceedings after he allegedly kicked a student in the groin while substitute teaching in Wellsville southwest of Kansas City.
The Republican lawmaker was given a 90-day suspended jail sentence and put on probation for a year by Magistrate Judge Kevin Kimball during a short hearing conducted over Zoom.
That’s nothing. Hell, being told to stay off Facebook is a reward. And if he’s allowed to post things on social media for political reasons, that technically gives him the ability to post anything, anytime, by just using politics as a cover story.
What lesson is he supposed to learn from this?!
The most disturbing aspect is that none of this has affected his political career. Republicans haven’t removed him from committees or expelled him from the party because of course they didn’t. The Republican playbook has always been to mildly condemn their colleagues’ worst actions while doing everything they can to keep that seat in their control. Samsel is a reliable conservative vote. There’s nothing he could do — and no one he couldn’t assault — to make his party possibly give up an inch of power. Remember: Republicans in Kansas need his vote to override the Democratic governor’s vetoes of their awful bills.
It’s a depressing conclusion to a troubling story.
(Thanks to Izra’il for the link. Large portions of this article were published earlier)