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A First Openly Transgender Woman Was Executed Today in the United States

A 49-year-old transgender woman named Amber McLaughlin will set to be executed today, January 3, 2023 by injection in the United States. She was sentenced to death by murdering her girlfriend last 2003. The clemency was granted by Missouri Governor Mike Parson.

As of January 01, 2022, a petition asking Parson to cease the execution had nearly 4,900 of the 6,400 signatures it needed according to Larry Komp, McLaughlin’s attorney.

The clemency petition addresses a variety of factors, including McLaughlin’s difficult upbringing and her mental health problems, which the jury was never told about during her trial. It was also stated that she has depression and has made several suicide attempts according to an article posted by CBS News on January 02, 2023.

In 2006, McLaughlin was held liable of first-degree murder. A jury couldn’t agree on a judgement, so a judge executed McLaughlin. A federal appeals court panel reinstated the death penalty in 2021 despite a 2016 court order for a new sentencing hearing.

Jessica Hicklin, a 43-year-old transgender, who served 26 years in prison for a drug-related murder in western Missouri in 1995, is one person who knew Amber before she transitioned. Hicklin claimed McLaughlin was so reserved that they hardly ever spoke. But when McLaughlin started transitioning about three years ago, she turned to Hicklin for advice on matters like acquiring mental health counseling and finding assistance to ensure her safety while imprisoned in a maximum-security facility that is predominately male.

She is a vulnerable person according to Hicklin. McLaughlin is definitely afraid of being victimized or assaulted, which happens more frequently to transgender people in the Department of Corrections. McLaughlin was executed today by injection.

 

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