South Carolina Bowen Turner, 19, accused of raping three young girls between 2017 and 2019, after a three-year delay caused by courtroom maneuvers, received a sweetheart plea deal
Turner, 19, received a probation-only sentence, won’t register as a sex offender to the chagrin of the victims and their families
Bowen Turner attacked Chloe Bess at a party in June 2019, while he was on bond at the time of that attack for allegedly raping Dallas Stoller, another girl, the previous year
Bowen’s attorney is a State Senator; his father Walt previously worked for the office of the prosecutor that charged him
Dallas Stoller killed herself in November, 2021, before the case went to trial, allegedly, succumbing to the backlash from her community for reporting Turner’s assault
Prosecutors then dropped the charges against Bowen because Stoller wasn’t around to testify
Bess, incidentally the only victim available to testify, was denied a chance to speak in court before the guilty plea
‘I want to know where they got the audacity from to think that they [prosecutors], had the right to make that call that night,’ – Chloe Bess
In April, Dallas’ grieving parents received a call from someone phoning on Bowen Turner’s behalf
Caller said he was ‘sorry’, but the Stollers must stop speaking publicly about the case because it is ‘dampening [Turner’s] bright future’
Days later, Bowen’s mother Jennifer tried calling victim’s dad, Karl Stoller, twice but he didn’t reply
Stoller’s family is now fighting to have her case reopened so that Turner can face trial for the 2018 sexual assault
South Carolina teenager Bowen Turner, 19, who was accused of three separate rape cases has been shown having a swell time, serving his probation sentence at home in Orangeburg, South Carolina. The teen has been accused of raping three girls but in April, he somehow snagged a soft landing – A sweetheart plea deal that had him admitting to assault on one girl only, which set tongues wagging.
He did not have to sign the sex offender’s register and he did not have to spend any time in jail. The question then, was whether the teen with multiple accusations of sexual misconduct against him got off easy thanks to his family’s ties to the state’s judicial system?
The third named victim, Chloe Bess, incidentally the only victim that could have testified, was denied a chance to speak in court before the guilty plea, which has Bess querying the arrogance of the prosecutors who brokered a plea a arrangement without prior consultation with the victims.
Chloe Bess and her family moved out of the state amid fierce backlash from the small South Carolina community of Orangeburg, for coming forward with the accusations against alleged serial rapist, Bowen Turner.
Furthermore, the Bess and Stoller families had to wait for justice in a case that dragged on for three years, in part because of Turner’s lawyer Bradley Hutto’s legislative duties as a state senator.
In the interim, Turner violated his house arrest dozens of times, visiting malls, golf courses, restaurants, and the cemetery where Dallas Stoller was buried without any repercussions, court documents show.
Now it has being reported that his family and friends badgered the parents of one of the girls he allegedly attacked, telling them to stop speaking to the media about her suicide because it’s ‘dampening his bright future’.
The plea arrangement which last month had Turner’s restitution pegged at a probation-only sentence, by pleading guilty to assault and battery rather than rape.
Bowen He had been accused of attacking Chloe Bess at a house party in Orangeburg, South Carolina, in June 2019, when she was 16.
It was the third time he’d been accused of rape. The first time, the case was not pursued.
In the second case, the alleged victim, Dallas Stoller, killed herself before it ever went to court.
Stoller’s grieving family and Chloe Bess’s parents have spoken out against the lenient deal he received in the last month.
They are also fighting to have case against Turner for rape of Dallas Stoller reopened.
The Stoller case was dropped after the alleged victim killed herself and prosecutors made that decision, because she couldn’t be there to testify against Turner.
Bowen Turner, now 19, was accused by Chloe Bess, 19, of sexual assault at a party when she was 16. He pled guilty to a lesser charge of assault and battery. The judge gave him a suspended sentence, with no time actually spent in jail. Chloe’s attack happened while Turner was out on bond after he allegedly sexually assaulted another girl, 17-year-old Dallas Stoller, who later died of self-inflicted injuries.
Now, the fortunate lad is serving out his ‘probation-only’ sentence at his parents’ home in Orangeburg, South Carolina. It has been revealed that in the months since his sentencing, his family and friends have twice made contact with the family of Dallas Stoller.
Stoller committed suicide in November 2021 before her case went to trial, but her family have now filed a request with the judge in the case for a restraining order against the entire family, and not just Bowen.
On April 13, Dallas’ mother Michelle Stoller received a phone call from an unknown number. The caller said his name was ‘Adam’ and that he was phoning on behalf of Bowen Turner.
‘They said Bowen was sorry for what he had done but could we stop speaking to the media because he had an extremely bright future and all of this was dampening it. Saying that to parents who have just buried their daughters…what about Dallas’ future? She doesn’t have one because of him.’
‘It’s deeply inappropriate. As if it wasn’t enough with Dallas, the bullying is just continuing,’ Dallas’ older sister Brette Tabatabai said.
Dallas Stoller took her own life in November 2021. Her family say she had been relentlessly bullied for reporting Bowen Turner for rape in 2018.
Her case was pending when she died. It was later dropped because prosecutors said she couldn’t testify against him.
Turner has been accused of raping two other girls Three days later, on April 16, Dallas’ father Karl Stoller received two missed calls on his cell phone. They said Bowen was sorry for what he had done but could we stop speaking to the media because he had an extremely bright future and all of this was dampening it Brette Tabatabai, Dallas Stollers’ sister.
The caller ID identified the number as that of Jennifer Turner, Bowen’s mother. He didn’t answer either of the calls.
‘I chose not to answer the call. I didn’t have anything to say and I didn’t need to hear about problems we were causing for Bowen, I didn’t feel like it was appropriate… I felt anger and surprise but then you’re appalled.
‘I don’t care about his bright future in light of what happened to my daughter. It’s surprising and appalling, Karl Stoller, a part-time sheriff’s deputy, said.
The family has now asked a judge to issue a permanent restraining order.
They and the Bess family say Bowen received special treatment because he was represented by State Senator Brad Hutto, and because his father works in the court system in the small town.
In April this year, after he was given a sweetheart deal for an attack on another girl, which saw Bowen Turner was freed.
Stoller’s mother and father started receiving calls from his friends and family.
On April 16, Dallas’ father received two missed calls from a number that gave Jennifer Turner’s name as the caller ID
‘It’s the Good Ole’ Boys system… it’s all power, politics and privilege,’ Brette said.
Her father added: ‘Turner’s family are obviously well connected.
‘They’re in the country club area, we live on a farm.’
Dallas and Bowen were friends when he allegedly raped her in October 2018. He was arrested for first degree sexual-assault in January 2019, but was released on bond.
Later that year, he attacked Chloe Bess, a 16-year-old at a party in the same town. She reported him and he was arrested on suspicion of sexual assault.
In November 2021, both girls were waiting for their day in court when Stoller, who was by then a senior in college, took her own life.
Her family do not want to reveal exactly how she died, beyond saying that it was from a self-inflicted wound. She was found inside her apartment by her roommate.
In July 2019, Bowen Turner was in court facing one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct from an alleged June 2 rape incident. Turner was already on bond on a charge of first-degree criminal sexual conduct with aggravated force due to a prior alleged incident from Oct. 7, 2018, in Bamberg, SC.
Stoller was ripped apart by local bullies after reporting her claims to the police.
For three years, her family say she had been quietly suffering while watching the persistent support for Bowen from their small town.
‘People started sending me screenshots of stuff on social media that had been posted at the time.
‘We don’t have Dallas’ cell phone but people are sending us all this stuff. It’s people saying “we love you Bowen” “#FreeBowen”, “we believe you.”
‘I just imagined being Dallas and seeing this… the school wasn’t doing anything about it,’ Brette said.
When she moved to college in her freshman year, one girl on her dorm floor had even been asked to keep tabs on her, the family say.
Prosecutors dropped the charges against Bowen after Dallas Stoller died, because they said they didn’t have enough evidence without her in-court testimony.
Her family wants the case to be reopened and say there is enough other evidence like these pictures, her sworn statements, a rape kit and DNA testing from her clothes
‘Nothing changes the fact that we’ve lost our baby. That is something we will live with the rest of our lives,’ Dallas’ father Karl said.
Bowen’s GPS monitoring report shows he visited the cemetery where Dallas is buried.
It’s unclear if he was there to visit her or someone else
The family are in possession of horrible photos of injuries and lacerations their daughter suffered after the October 2018 attack. She told police how Bowen raped her at a party in the town where the both grew up.
‘She started getting physically ill, she had to go to the hospital several times. Her anxiety and depression got so bad,’ her sister added.
On November 14, 2021, Dallas died in her apartment.
Her family have never revealed how she took her own life, other than saying that she succumbed to a ‘self inflicted wound.’
‘Turner’s family are obviously well connected. They’re in the country club area, we live on a farm’.
‘Dallas that day, she and her roommate were packing because her roommate was graduating in December. They were moving out of their apartment and into another.
Dallas had basically, just – we don’t know. She just had had a bad day, we don’t know. She succumbed to a self-inflicted wound,’ her sister explained.
‘Nothing changes the fact that we’ve lost our baby.
‘That is something we will live with the rest of our lives. You’re doing OK out front but deep down it’s still there,’ Karl Stoller added.
Five months after she killed herself, prosecutor Dave Miller decided to drop the rape case against Bowen. He told the family that he didn’t think he could land a conviction without her testimony.
Bowen was inundated with support from the local community. They said the girls were all lying and had consented to the encounters with him.
The Stoller family say they only realized the extent of the online bullying after she died.
Dallas’ family are campaigning for the case to be reopened.
They say the other evidence including photographs of her injuries, the results of a rape kit, her sworn testimony before she died and DNA from the clothes she was wearing should all be enough to take the case to trial.
86,000 people agree and have signed a Change.org petition asking Solicitor Bill Weeks to reopen the case. ‘Because of the amount of evidence they had in this situation, being her written statement, photographs, physical evidence ad witness statements, that were all attested to and signed, I felt like they had a little better than average chance at success moving forward with prosecution,’ her father Karl said.
He added that he wants people in the town who had bullied his daughter to let justice take its course.
‘If indeed it is proven that he did it, shame on you for jumping to conclusions that automatically the female is a liar and brought it on herself.
‘Dallas put up a fight. She was bruised battered scratched.
‘Don’t be mean and judgmental but don’t suit here and not see the forest for the trees. This happened. It was not consensual.
‘The bullying and abuse this child took from a community…it’s saddening.’
With Dallas gone and the first alleged victim’s case at a standstill, Chloe’s allegations were the only claims tried in court. She had told prosecutors how he raped her outside a friend’s house at a party in Orangeburg in June 2019. ‘I froze up. On the inside, I was yelling and wanting to kick and scream but it was like I was a dead body. It was an out of body experience.
Chloe Bess was attacked by Bowen in June 2019. She said of the attack: ‘I froze up. On the inside, I was yelling and wanting to kick and scream but it was like I was a dead body. It was an out of body experience.’
With the support of her family, Bess has agreed to waive her right to anonymity as the victim of a sexual attack. She recalls how Bowen he pinned her to the ground and forced himself on her outside a house party.
‘All I remember after that is being on the ground looking up at the stars, completely aware of what’s going on.
‘I froze up. On the inside, I was yelling and wanting to kick and scream but it was like I was a dead body. It was an out of body experience.
‘I was like “I hope it’s quick so I can get up and run away.” I then found myself in the bathroom – I had leaves and twigs in my hair, my shirt was on wrong,’ she said.
She reported it to her school and parents that week.
‘I saw what was happening to the other two girls – Dallas specifically. I just didn’t know if I wanted that, it was so intimidating. I was 16 – it’s stuff that you hear about in movies and documentaries.
‘I see what Dallas is going through and just how nasty everybody was being to her. I was new to the town, I didn’t grow up there like everyone else did. It took me about a day to come to terms with “it doesn’t matter what anybody else thinks, I have to report this”,’ Chloe said.
Naysayers in the town questioned why she didn’t fight him. They said it proved the interaction was consensual.
‘The child was 16 years old and weighed 100lbs whereas Bowen, at the time. was a pretty good sized boy. What was she going to do?’ Dallas’ father Karl said.
While awaiting trial for that attack, Bowen was ordered to be on house arrest.
GPS Monitoring records however show that he played golf numerous times, went shopping and out for dinners with his family.
‘He went car shopping on Christmas Eve in Georgia, out of state. He’s going to steak houses, he’s going shopping, he went to the cemetery where my sister’s buried. That was pretty upsetting. He went and played golf the next day,’ Brette said.
In April 2022, prosecutors made a deal with Bowen, who is represented by Brad Hutto – a State Senator, which drastically dropped his charges from sexual assault to assault and battery. He was given a probation-only sentence and did not have to sign the sex offenders’ register.
The Bess family say they were stunned by the deal, especially since she had told prosecutors she did not think it gave Bowen an appropriate punishment for what he had done to her.
‘I was very disappointed and it was kind of like my worst thought came true. It was presented to me prior that it was maybe an option and I made it very clear it wasn’t an option for me.
Dallas’ family are now campaigning to reopen her case. They say there is enough evidence to charge Bowen with sexually assaulting her without her being alive to testify against him
‘When he got to walk away scot-free, it was a very defeating feeling. I feel like no one was listening to me. I was very against it from the get-go.
‘Why even ask me if you’re going to do it anyway?’ They’re sitting there and saying we ruined his life and took opportunities away from him. But I have to wake up every day and think of what he did to me. Dallas can’t do anything anymore… it was taken away from her because of what he did to her.
The Bess family were torn apart by the case; Chloe and her twin brother moved to Florida to escape the bullying in Orangeburg, while Carol and her husband Darren – a senior pastor in the church – stayed behind.
They say they want the system in Orangeburg and South Carolina to change to be more considerate of sexual assault victims.
‘Nothing could have prepared us for the phone call that this was what ended this wonderful young lady’s life.
‘It has encouraged us to increase the fight – it has given us propulsion to do this in her honor,’ Carol said of Dallas’ death.
‘They’re sitting there and saying we ruined his life and took opportunities away from him. But I have to wake up every day and think of what he did to me. Dallas can’t do anything anymore… it was taken away from her because of what he did to her.
‘It’s completely inappropriate that they reached out to the family knowing how sensitive everything is. Who are they to say that we can’t talk about this?
‘We’re not going to be quiet about it anymore. We’re making people aware of what is going on in that town.
‘I want to know where they got the audacity from to think that they had the right to make that call that night,’ Chloe added.
Solicitor Bill Weeks is yet to address the subject of reopening Dallas Stoller case.