The story plays out like a bad movie script, because we’ve unfortunately all heard it before:
- Man meets woman and wants romantic and/or sexual relations with her.
- Man discovers that woman is transgender.
- Man decides to prove he’s a big, manly man and murders her in cold blood.
- Man tries to escape justice by claiming “trans panic.”
It didn’t quite work for the “Man” in this case, as Marine Pfc. Joseph Pemberton was found guilty of homicide for strangling and drowning (in a toilet) transgender woman Jennifer Laude after they met in a hotel room for a presumed romantic encounter. While Laude’s family, loved ones, and friends did not receive the verdict they were hoping for (murder), nonetheless Pemberton was sentenced to 6 to 12 years in prison, and a fine of more than $130,000.
The case has also created a minor international incident, with the United States and the Philippines arguing over where Pemberton should serve his time, but really, that tempest in a teapot is hardly going to do anything to help the family of the murdered woman.
Source: USA Today
I first reported on this outrage a couple of days ago. The short story – two transgender women on the Atlanta, Georgia MARTA train were attacked and assaulted, with at least one of them stripped naked – all while the crowd applauded or stood by and watched.
Well, two of the animals who attached the women have been arrested, and one of them has decided to double down by using a “trans panic defense.” Not too far removed from the legendary Chewbacca Defense, the suspect alleges:
“These guys, they came on to me,” Thomas said in the interview. “Even the one that looked exactly like a female said she like guys with dreads. He’s calling me the ‘n word’ and then saying, ‘y’all better get him.’ [They were] getting closer and closer.”
At that point in the incident, Thomas acknowledged that he escalated the altercation, kicking one of the women in the stomach, later punching her in the face.
“I hate that it did happen,” says Thomas. “I hate that I lost my temper. If I could do it all over again, I probably would have moved to another car or got off the train or something.”
Shame that since he is only being charged with a misdemeanor, so he can’t wait for the next train from prison.
WATCH: Suspect in Atlanta Beating Invokes ‘Trans Panic’ Defense | Advocate.com.