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Gov. Patrick Talks Kosilek Case, Says Will be Involved in Future Decisions

Patrick urges caution in case regarding former Mansfield resident Michelle Kosilek.

Michelle Kosilek changed her name from Robert and is currently serving a life sentence without parole for murdering his wife in 1990. Recently, she successfully sued the state for a sex-change operation in a contentious court case.

That ruling also stipulates that the state will have to pay for Kosilek’s operation, which is causing so much controversy Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick has spoken out on the issue and has stated that he will be playing a role in the case.

While stating that he is against the ruling, Patrick said caution was the right avenue to take in this issue, as determining the constitutionality of medical treatment of inmates would have lasting repercussions.

“It’s not a reflection of a point of view about gender-identity disorder,” Patrick said, in his first comments on the appeal. “Apparently, that is a real disorder. And, indeed, Kosilek has been getting treatment for that disorder. The question is whether it should go all the way to surgery, and what the implications are for the safety of Kosilek and other inmates, in that event.”

Wednesday evening, the Massachusetts Department of Corrections stated that it would appeal the ruling.

Originally, Kosilek sued the state over 12 years ago.


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