22 July 2013

Conviction Set Aside In Killing Of Transgender Woman In New York State

Four years ago, Dwight DeLee became the second person convicted in the US for a hate crime in the killing of a transgender person.  His August 2009 conviction for killing Lateisha Green in Syracuse, NY came three months after a Colorado jury convicted Allen Andrade of beating Angie Zapata to death in Colorado after discovering that she was biologically male.

Andrade is still in prison, serving a life sentence he was handed because of his hate crime conviction and the long rap sheet he had before he killed Angie Zapata.  

DeLee also remains in prison, though it remains to be seen how much longer he will be there. For the moment, he's locked up on a gun charge.  However, his conviction on Manslaughter in the First Degree as a hate crime has been set aside.  The Fourth Appellate Division of New York's Supreme Court, which sits in Rochester, made the ruling because a jury found him not guilty of Manslaughter in the First Degree without the added element of a hate crime.
However, the same jury found him guilty on a weapons charge.

Onandaga County District Attorney Bill Fitzpatrick said his office will seek review in the New York State Court of Appeals, citing errors in the trial judge's instructions to the jury.

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