“A sentence of 25 years to life is an incredibly long period of time, judge. Shouldn’t that be reserved for people who are guilty of killing certain classes of individuals? Who is the victim in this case? Is the victim a person in the higher end of the community? Amanda was engaged in a life of prostitution, life of drug use, HIV exposure. She was having sex with other individuals knowing she had the chance of spreading diseases.” – Queens attorney John Scarpa, defending his client Rasheen Everett for the murder of transgender prostitute Amanda Gonzalez-Andujar. The judge slammed Scarpa’s comments then sentenced Everett to 29 years in prison.
The Anti-Violence Project has issued a statement:
AVP is calling for a public apology by Scarpa for this outrageous statement that says that transgender women and sex workers should be legally devalued by society. This type of speech is tantamount to hate speech and says that LGBT people, and particularly transgender women, are “other” and not worthy of protection. This hate speech is irresponsible and we are also calling on the Queens District Attorney’s office to issue a public condemnation of Scarpa’s dangerous and offensive remarks.