Transgender woman found dead in cell after being sent to all male prison


The West Yorkshire transwoman had threatened to kill herself if sent to a male prison


Vicky Thompson, 21, was being held at Armley, Leeds, where she was pronounced dead on Friday.

Thompson had been handed a 12-month jail term in August which was suspended for 24 months. She later breached the terms of the sentence and was remanded in custody at Bradford Crown Court.

Friends of Thompson said she was born male but had identified as female since her mid-teens. She had asked to be sent to a female prison. Her solicitor, Mohammed Hussain, said he had advised the judge she was “essentially a woman” and asked for her to be sent to New Hall women’s prison, near Wakefield.

The International Business Times reports she had told friends she would kill herself if sent to the men’s jail instead of a woman’s prison nearby.

Thompson’s boyfriend, Robert Steele, said he had spoken to her a day before and had booked a visit to the prison before her death.

“She didn’t like it in there because people were saying things to her because she was dressing as a female,” he said.

A Prison Service spokesperson said: “HMP Leeds prisoner Vicky Thompson was found unresponsive on the evening of Friday, 13 November.

“Staff and paramedics attempted resuscitation, but she was pronounced dead at 20:48 GMT.

An investigation into her death has been launched, the Prison Service said. However, West Yorkshire Police said Thompson’s death was not being treated as suspicious.

Ms Thompson’s death comes just weeks after Tara Hudson, a transgender woman from Bath, was transferred to a female prison after a campaign to get her moved.

© 2015 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.

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