SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

September 11, 2012

Mass. reviewing judge's inmate sex change ruling


The Salem News

---- — BOSTON (AP) — Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick says his administration is reviewing a judge's ruling ordering state prison officials to pay for sex reassignment surgery for a transgender inmate.

Patrick said yesterday that no decision has been made on whether to appeal last week's decision by U.S. District Court Judge Mark Wolf, who ruled the surgery was medically necessary to treat Michelle Kosilek's "serious medical need."

Kosilek was born male but has received hormone treatments and lives as a woman in an all-male prison. He was named Robert when he was convicted of killing his wife in 1990 and is serving life in prison.

Patrick notes the ruling went against the state, which opposed the surgery. But the Democrat also calls the judge "thoughtful and scholarly" and says the state wants to fully evaluate the opinion before deciding what to do.