Via the Los Angeles Times (link here) I learn that the pretrial hearing has begun in the Larry King murder case. Brandon McInerney, accused of killing classmate Larry King, “faces a first-degree murder charge for allegedly taking out a weapon as class got underway Feb. 12, 2008, and shooting King twice in the back of the head”.
Needless to say, the defense attorney has already begun the victim-blaming, no doubt in preparation for wheeling out the ever-creakier trans panic defense.
Prosecutors say it was a hate crime. But on Monday, defense attorney Scott Wippert repeatedly suggested that King provoked violent behavior by flirting on campus with McInerney while dressed in women’s high-heeled boots, earrings and makeup.
The 4-foot, 11-inch King “sexually harassed” McInerney by openly declaring his affection for him and humiliating him with his attention, Wippert said.
However, whether this farcical attempt to shift the blame on to Larry King – who, let us not forget, can’t testify in person, on account of having been shot to death – will actually succeed when Mr McInerney has apparently already confessed, is another matter:
A few minutes after he allegedly gunned down his gay classmate, Oxnard junior high school student Brandon McInerney calmly allowed police to take him into custody, telling them, “I’m the one who did it,” the officers testified in a Ventura courthouse Monday.
“He said, ‘I’m sorry, I did it, officer. I shot him,’ ” said Officer Joe Tinoco, of the Oxnard Police Department.
As Tinoco and Sgt. Peter Freiberg patted McInerney down, the eighth-grader told them he had left his weapon behind in the classroom, Tinoco said.
In addition there are other testimonies which seem to suggest premeditation on the part of Mr McInerney:
One student, a female friend of King’s, reportedly told Oxnard Police Sgt. Kevin Baysinger that McInerney sought her out the day before the shooting. McInerney reportedly told the girl, “Tell Larry goodbye because you’re not going to see him again,” Baysinger testified.
One of McInerney’s friends told investigators that the youth said he was “going to kill” King. He told another friend that they should jump King and “shank” him.
The hearing continues.
Note: There are two useful pieces discussing the trans panic defense in more depth:
- This link via Holly in comments at Feministe and,
- This link (Banning the trans panic defense) by Dr Jillian T. Weiss at The Bilerico Project
Cross-posted at Questioning Transphobia
Previous, related posts:
- Lawrence King: one year on (February 12, 2009)
- Lawyers of Lawrence King’s alleged killer denied access to files (December 30, 2008)
- Don’t panic (July 31, 2008)
- The one thing we should change is hate (May 5, 2008)