Dwight DeLee, who was convicted in July of first-degree manslaughter as a hate crime for the shooting death of Lateisha Green in Syracuse, New York in November, received the maximum sentence of 25 years in prison this morning from Judge William Walsh. DeLee shot and killed Green with a 22-caliber rifle as she sat in a car outside a house party. Several witnesses said they hear DeLee use anti-gay slurs before the shooting.
"DeLee read a statement in court this morning maintaining he is
innocent and attacking the media coverage of his case and the jury
verdict against him. He offered an apology to the victim's family, but
maintained he did not kill anybody. 'I'm no monster. I'm a young human being,' DeLee said. The victim's mother, Roxanne Green, spoke briefly in court so that DeLee would understand the depth of the family's loss. 'He took a very precious life,' Green said, adding she hoped DeLee
would see the victim's face every time he closes his eyes for the rest
of his life. Chief Assistant District Attorney Matthew Doran
called the death 'a sad and senseless intentional tragedy' as he asked
County Judge William Walsh for the maximum penalty."
DeLee's was the second hate crime conviction involving a transgender victim in the nation, and the first in New York.