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$80,000 Settlement in CDC Transsexual Suit

In August 2000, the State of California settled a claim from a transsexual former prisoner that her need for hormone therapy was ignored while incarcerated by agreeing to pay her $80,000.

Torey Tuesday South, 40, began her trek through the California penal system when she entered San Quentin Prison in 1994. She claims she was brutally raped by a guard and denied sexchange drugs that she had been taking for years.

That treatment prompted her to file suit against the California Department of Corrections (CDC) more than five years ago in federal court in Sacramento.

South, who was released from prison in 1998, acted as her own attorney until the court appointed Susan Christian, a supervising attorney at the King Hall Civil Rights Clinic at the University of CaliforniaDavis, Law School.

According to a 1996 court memorandum filed by Christian, the cessation of South's hormone treatment resulted in nausea, vomiting, dizziness and masculinization _ "a reversal of the chemical castration process."

After a short nonjury trial in December 1996, U.S. District Judge David F. Levi issued a preliminary injunction against the department that ordered South's treatment to be resumed.

In March 1999, Levi ruled that corrections officials "denied, delayed and intentionally interfered" with South's treatment and ordered a trial on damages.

The case settled in August 2000 after the 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals rejected CDC's argument that they were immune from South's claims.

The $80,000 settlement was later enhanced by another $12,161 when the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ordered the state to pay that amount to the UCD Civil Rights Clinic for their costs in defending the appeal.

Source: The Sacramento Bee.

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Related legal case

South v. _____