U.S. Supreme Court

Supreme Court declines to block sex reassignment surgery for transgender inmate

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The U.S. Supreme Court declined Thursday night to stay court-ordered sex reassignment surgery for a transgender inmate.

The Supreme Court’s order said Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. would have granted the stay requested by Idaho prison officials, report the New York Times and the Washington Post.

The inmate, Adree Edmo, had twice tried to castrate herself in prison. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at San Francisco had said a diagnosis of gender dysphoria by itself may not be enough to require surgery. But Edmo had shown that, in her circumstances, the prison’s refusal to provide the surgery violated the constitutional ban on cruel and unusual punishment.

The 9th Circuit had refused in February to rehear the case en banc. A statement on the denial by Judge Diarmuid O’Scannlain, joined by eight other judges, said the 9th Circuit was the first federal appeals court to require that a state provide sex reassignment surgery to a prisoner under the Eighth Amendment.

Edmo is in prison for sexually assaulting a 15-year-old sleeping boy.

Hat tip to the Marshall Project.

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