Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Justice for Angie?

While I was at school today, the verdict in the Angie Zapata trial came in--guilty on all four counts.

From Questioning Transphobia:

* Count 1: First degree murder - guilty
* Count 2: Bias motivated crime - guilty
* Count 3: Aggravated motor vehicle theft (1st degree) - guilty
* Count 4: ID theft - guilty

Sentencing for the first count: mandatory life without parole.
Sentencing on the remaining three counts will take place on May 8th at 3PM MST.

To me, the most important part of this verdict isn't just the conviction for murder. Great, we're admitting that a transgender woman IS fully human--is not a thing or a monster, killing her is in fact murder.

But what matters to me is the "bias motivated crime" charge. The fact that a jury convicted Andrade of a hate crime, that they not only didn't buy his argument of "victimization" but they saw that killing Angie because she was transgender is a hate crime, pure and simple.

Like several bloggers and others that commented on Twitter, I know "justice" can't ever really be done in cases like this. Angie isn't back. Her killer will go to prison, but the prison system is itself horribly screwed up. Will this actually change the treatment of transgender women by the media, the legal system, the world at large?

I suppose all we can hope for--and work for--is at least a small improvement.