There is a verdict in the trial of Dwight DeLee for the death of Lateisha Green. Green was a trans woman who died from gunshot wounds in November; DeLee was originally charged with murder in the second degree as a hate crime.
From the full Associated Press‘ article NY man guilty of hate crime in transgender slaying:
A jury on Friday convicted a man of manslaughter as a hate crime for killing a transgender woman he shot outside a house party last year.
Dwight DeLee was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter for the fatal shooting of 22-year-old Lateisha Green outside a Syracuse house party in November because of anti-gay bias. He becomes just the second person in the U.S. convicted of a hate crime that involved the death of a transgender victim.
The Onondaga County Court jury delivered its verdict after deliberating for about six hours over two days.
DeLee faces additional prison time because he was convicted of a hate crime.
Syracuse.com is reporting that:
DeLee, 20, of Gifford Street, now faces a minimum of 10 years in state prison, and a maximum of 25 years, when he is sentenced by Judge William Walsh Aug. 18.
The jury of six men and six women acquitted DeLee of a more serious charge of second-degree murder as a hate crime.
UPDATE: Press releases from The Task Force and GLAAD below the fold.
* Pam’s House Blend tag: LaTeisha Green
Task Force responds to guilty verdict in trial involving the killing of Lateisha Green
Director of Communications
WASHINGTON, July 17 – The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force responded today to the verdict against Dwight DeLee, who was found guilty of first-degree manslaughter as a hate crime, for the fatal shooting of Lateisha Green, a 22-year-old African-American transgender woman. On Nov. 14, 2008, Green was shot and killed outside a house party in Syracuse, N.Y.
Statement by Rea Carey, Executive Director
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
“This verdict sends a strong message that hate violence will not be condoned. How many more like Lateisha Green must spill blood before our society says no to harassment, no to discrimination and no to violence against transgender people? We must move forward, at all levels of government, to pass laws that fight hate in schools, in workplaces and on the streets. We must continue working toward a culture that affirms the dignity and worth of all people. While no verdict will bring Lateisha Green back, justice was served today.”
To learn more about the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, follow us on Twitter: @TheTaskForce.
GLAAD Statement On Guilty Verdict In The Killing Of LaTeisha Green
Director of National News
New York, NY, July 17, 2009 – The Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) today responded to the verdict in the trial involving the killing of Lateisha (Teish) Green. Green, a 22-year-old African American transgender woman, was shot and killed on November 14, 2008 in Syracuse, N.Y. Today a jury found 20-year old Dwight Delee guilty of manslaughter in the first degree as a hate crime.
“Today’s verdict brings justice for Lateisha Green, but it can never heal the immense loss her family has experienced,” said Jarrett Barrios, incoming President of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD). “We join Lateisha Green’s family in mourning her tragic death and honoring her legacy, and we call on the media to spotlight the pervasive violence our community continues to face across the nation.”
Today’s verdict is the first hate crime conviction for the death of a transgender person in New York. Dwight Delee was found guilty of manslaughter in the first degree as a hate-crime based on his perception of Lateisha Green’s sexual orientation.
GLAAD Senior Media Field Strategist Andy Marra has been on the ground throughout the trial in Syracuse, N.Y. working closely with Lateisha Green’s family, numerous media outlets and alongside our sister organizations the Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund and the Empire State Pride Agenda. Marra worked to ensure that all media coverage of this case was fair, accurate and inclusive.
Following the verdict Lateisha Green’s family released this statement:
“Teish, a beautiful girl. A wonderful daughter. A brave soul. Teish was all of these things despite the adversity that regularly tried to weigh her down and overshadow her love of life. She was taken away from us too soon. All it took was one bullet.
“A bullet from a rifle that pierced her lungs and heart. And it took this one mere bullet to end Teish’s life because she happened to be a transgender woman. We have spent months waiting for this day to come.
“8 long months that have kept our family captive to our fears, sadness and anger. Afraid to leave our homes, sad to have lost Teish and angry that we couldn’t prevent this from happening to our little girl. But today, the jury delivered a verdict that will end most of the horrors experienced by our family and friends.
“The jury convicted Dwight Delee of murdering Teish in cold blood. They found him guilty of targeting Teish simply because of her difference. And the jury has made it clear that any loss of life in our city and county because of anti-gay and anti-transgender bias is unacceptable and wrong. justice has been done.
“But we will never get to see Teish ever again. She will forever live in our hearts and minds. And it is our duty to share her story so that Teish’s memory will be kept alive. We do this so this series of painful events will never happen again to any other person because they are different.
“Our family and friends will continue to talk about Teish so others may know the love and support that every child deserves regardless of their differences. We want to thank everyone who stood behind us and gave our family strength during such difficult times. The overwhelming amount of support has meant so much to us. we want to close by saying life is precious. Teish knew that and that’s why she would tell everyone here to be brave. To be authentic and true to yourself. And Teish would give a beautiful and bright smile to everyone here. Thank you.”