Man cleared of Kellie Telesford murder

August 15, 2008

The BBC carries this report (link):

A teenager has been cleared of killing a transsexual woman found strangled in her south London home.

Shanniel Hyatt, 18, denied that he killed Kellie Telesford in a rage after discovering she was a pre-operative transgender female who was born a man.

Her body was found after they engaged in sexual activity at her Thornton Heath flat, the Old Bailey heard.

Mr Hyatt, from Norbury, south London, was found not guilty of murder and an alternative count of manslaughter.

Evening date

The teenager, a father-of-one whose girlfriend was away at the time of the incident, admitted meeting Ms Telesford for a date and going back to her flat.

He was filmed on CCTV leaving Ms Telesford’s home in the early hours of 18 November last year, using her Oyster travel card to board a bus.

Ms Telesford, who worked as a florist and beautician, was found dead at the flat three days later. She had been strangled with a scarf.

Prosecutor Sally O’Neill told the court that Mr Hyatt stole Ms Telesford’s mobile phone and electronic equipment as well as her Oyster card.

‘Cheap thief’

Defending, Joanna Greenberg said Mr Hyatt was a “cheap and nasty thief” but that Ms Telesford was “fit and well” when he left her flat.

She suggested that Ms Telesford may have died during a consensual sex game which went wrong, or that she may have inflicted her fatal injuries herself.

Mr Hyatt said he only realised Ms Telesford was born a man shortly before police interviewed him.

Ms Greenberg said there were no signs that Ms Telesford fought Mr Hyatt, even though she had “a man’s strength”.

Mr Hyatt was remanded in custody on separate immigration matters.

ETA: I can’t figure out where this leaves us with regards to knowing how Kellie Telesford died.

Earlier in the trial, the defence barrister wanted us to believe that Kellie died while playing “kinky sex games” – so, what now? – on her own, after Hyatt had left, taking with him her cellphone and travelcard?

And did she strangle herself before or after she covered her body in the white blanket? – Remember that “the scarf was tied so tightly around her neck [the paramedics] could only get the tips of their fingers inside“…

And what of the “potentially partial DNA evidence” on the scarf that may have come from three or even four people?

Later edit: The more I think about this, the more I…

I mean, they even had the guy on CCTV, leaving her flat, using her Oystercard – and he’s not even guilty of identity theft?

Perhaps we should remember that “Mr Hyatt was remanded in custody on separate immigration matters“. Oh right, yes. That’ll help…

Three days Kellie Telesford lay dead on the floor of her flat.

Three frickin days...

…If you call that ‘justice’…


Saturday morning edit: I’ve also posted about this (with a link roundup) over at The F-Word. Link here.


‘Be nice’, indeed: time will tell…


FWIW, my earlier posts on this trial are here (most recent first):

8 Responses to “Man cleared of Kellie Telesford murder”

  1. […] EDIT: Queen Em. Lisa. Helen G. […]

  2. […] talking to a good friend just how fucken angry I was about certain things; like the verdict in the Kellie Telesford murder trial and all the fucked up victim blaming dripping with othering that was involved in it, people in the […]

  3. Incredible. It would be interesting to hear how Hyatt came to be in possession of her items, if he is indeed not guilty.

    Btw, I’ve added you to my blogroll.

  4. Helen G Says:

    avps: hello and thank you for the linky love… have blogrolled you back ^_^

  5. Eboni T-Girl Says:

    None of this to me make any real sence. How could he steal so many of her goods, enough to the point were he needed a large bag to carry them in? I quess she just stood there and watched him take away her items, with her permission?????

    To me this reaks of BULLSHT. If this was a biowoman who was found dead, then this case would of ended in a conviction. All this case reminds me of, is that we as transwomen, especially black transwomen/transwomen of color, are in the midst of fighting the same battles that our ancestors fought to gain their freedoms. We are now fighting the freedom of the mind. We want to be free from all the bias feelings towards us as transwomen, that could lead to a potential LACK OF CONVICTION.

    Eventually we as T-girls will be able to have our offenders prosecuted at the same rate of the offenders of biowomen. The sad reality, is that many Americans sitting on our jurys, will not understand our plight, unless they have a T-girl in their own families.

    Fo me, this is becomming all too frustrating. As a T-girl I decided to study medicine, but I wonder if I should of studied criminal law. I thought that I could help my girls more as an physician, but sometimes I wonder if I have made the right decision?

  6. Eboni T-Girl Says:

    People I feel as if we need a massive voice that will continue to expose the verdicts of the judicial system in relation to trans killings. This is the only way that pressure would be put to our judicial system.

    I know that we have lgbt media outlets, but we need a “Barbara Walters”, or someone who can bring all these trans killings to the living rooms of America. I know that she has expiereince with trans coverage, so perhaps this could be a way to go.

    Another way, could be a march on Washington in massive scale, which would force major news coverage of the injustices being done to our fallen sisters.

    But whatever course of action that we choose……..standing idle is not going to cut it any longer. We need action, and we need it now!!!

  7. Helen G Says:

    Hello Eboni, nice to see you again and I hope you’re well…

    For what it’s worth I think medicine is a great choice, we can’t fight if we’re sick… And remember that nurse in the Duanna Johnson CCTV footage? – Where Duanna’s on the floor in pain and that nurse walks right past her, and goes to the officer to fix the scratch on his hand first? That’s the kind of real injustice that can’t be fought in any court, every day trans women get that kind of abuse from the system that’s supposed to take care of them? You can make a real difference as a medical professional, no question. Healthcare is the key issue for us; your path is well-chosen, my sister, absolutely.

    And I definitely agree about needing a voice for our community – I live in London and there’s nothing like that here in the UK either. We may only be a small part of the population but that’s no reason why our voice shouldn’t be heard.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: