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Missouri transgender inmate executed with fatal stabbing | Missouri

a Missouri The inmate was sentenced to death for the 2003 murders and is believed to be the first transgender woman to be executed in the United States.

Amber McLaughlin was put to death on Tuesday night, hours after Missouri’s Republican Gov. Mike Parson turned down a request for a pardon. McLaughlin was found guilty in 2006 of murdering his ex-girlfriend in a St. Louis suburb in 2003.

The lenient request focused on several issues jurors hadn’t heard about during her trial, including McLaughlin’s deeply traumatized childhood and serious mental health issues.

Two members of the Missouri legislature, Democrats Cori Bush and Emmanuel Cleaver, are campaigning for McLaughlin’s sentence to be commuted, and last week said: wrote to parson urged him to abolish executions.

They noted that McLaughlin, 49, was sentenced to death when the judge in the case made a unilateral decision after the jury got bogged down about her fate. She complained of alleged shortcomings in her trial, including failing to include expert testimony and evidence regarding the defendant’s mental health.

They also condemned the death penalty in principle, calling executions “moral depravity.”

“They are not about justice. They are about who has institutional power and who does not. I encourage you to do so,” write Bush and Cleaver.

They further stated in their letter: People across America, including anti-LGBTQ+ hatred and violence, and a series of violence that targets and harms women. It just destroys yet another community while using the concept of fairness and justice as a cynical pretext. “

According to the Anti-Execution Death Penalty Information Center, there are no known cases of openly transgender people being executed in the United States.

McLaughlin underwent a sex change while incarcerated.

In 2003, long before the transition, McLaughlin was in a relationship with Beverly Gunther. After they stopped dating, McLaughlin would show up at the office in suburban St. Louis where Gunther worked, sometimes hiding inside the building. I escorted him to the car.

On the night of November 20, 2003, when Mr. Guenther was unable to return home, neighbors called the police. Officers went to the office building and found a broken knife handle and blood stains near her car. The next day, McLaughlin led police to the site near the Mississippi River in St. Louis where Gunther’s body was dumped.

McLaughlin was convicted of first-degree murder in 2006. Missouri and Indiana are the only states that allow a judge rather than a jury to sentence someone to death, Comp said.

In 2016, the court ordered a new sentencing hearing, but a federal appeals court panel has reinstated the death penalty in 2021.

Transgender inmate Jessica Hicklin described McLaughlin as a painfully shy person who came out of her shell after deciding to be transgender.

“She was always smiling and telling dad jokes,” Hicklin said. “If she ever talked to her, it was always dad’s joke.”

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/jan/03/amber-mclaughlin-missouri-transgender-person-execution Missouri transgender inmate executed with fatal stabbing | Missouri

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