Current Affairs

Man sentenced to 25 years in jail for killing trans woman

Jessica Geen August 18, 2009
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A man who shot dead a trans woman has been sentenced to the maximum term of 25 years in jail.

Dwight DeLee, 20, killed 22-year-old Lateisha Green with a single bullet to the chest in November 2008.

He was sentenced today in Syracuse by Judge William Walsh

Last month, he was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter as a hate crime in New York.

The jury, made up of six men and six women, acquitted DeLee of a murder charge after determining that he had only intended to injure Green rather than kill her when he shot her with a .22-calibre rifle as she sat in a car with her brother outside a house party.

The trial centred around DeLee’s defence, presented by attorney Clarence Johnson, who argued his client was not homophobic, and that the homophobic slurs that several witnesses said they heard him call Green before the shooting were intended for other people at the party and not for her.

The Green family have been campaigning for a change in the law since Lateisha’s murder as DeLee was prosecuted under hate crime laws only on the basis that he thought Green was gay, rather than trans.

More: Americas

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