U.S. Marine found guilty in death of Filipino transgender woman

By Amy R. Connolly  |  Dec. 1, 2015 at 7:10 AM
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MANILA, Dec. 1 (UPI) -- A U.S. Marine was convicted of homicide Tuesday for strangling a Filipino transgender woman and drowning her in a toilet.

U.S. Marine Lance Cpl. Joseph Scott Pemberton was found guilty of strangling Jennifer Laude and dunking her head in a toilet bowl in a hotel after discovering she was a transgender woman. He was sentenced to six to 12 years in prison.

Laude's mother criticized the sentence as not long enough. She had hoped Pemberton would be found guilty of murder, a more serious crime that carries a stiffer sentence than homicide.

"This is not complete justice but we have to recognize that there is victory here," an attorney for the Laude family said.

Pemberton and Laude went to a hotel in October 2014. Pemberton testified he choked Laude but did not kill her. He said he left the hotel and she was still alive.

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