Family, LGBTQ+ group react to release of New Bedford man pardoned for killing transgender womanCold blooded murderer of a trans person only gets 5 years and get a load of what his grandfather said…
By Kiernan Dunlop
October 20, 2020
NEW BEDFORD - While members of Lance Cpl. Joseph Scott Pemberton’s family are happy he’s been released from a Phillippine prison, a local LGBTQ+ group is concerned that the U.S. Marine may choose to resettle on the SouthCoast.
In September, Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte pardoned Pemberton, a New Bedford native, saying the Marine was not treated fairly after opponents blocked his early release for good conduct in detention.
“I was happy that he was out and the president from their country gave him the pardon,” Pemberton’s grandfather Joseph Pemberton said Monday, adding that the whole family is happy.
When he initially heard about his grandson’s involvement in a homicide, Joseph said he was shocked, because he’s known him since he was born and, “he was such a good good kid I couldn’t fathom him doing anything like this.”He used a “Trans panic defense.” which is banned here in Connecticut,
Pemberton’s grandfather said if he comes back to the SouthCoast, he doesn’t think anyone should fear him.
“He’s not a violent person,” Joseph said. “He would never harm anyone, there is more to the story than what we’ve read.”
Joseph said he’s the type of kid that wouldn’t kill a ladybug, he would just blow it away.
Witnesses said Pemberton and Laude had checked into a motel room where Laude, 26, was later found dead, her head slumped in a toilet bowl.The trans community speaks out in Massachusetts…
During his trial, Pemberton’s lawyers used a “trans panic” defense.
USA Today reported that Pemberton told the court he acted in self-defense after he discovered that a man, not a woman, was performing a sexual act on him.
“He should have stayed in jail,” Joan Stratton, a transgender woman and board member of the South Coast LGTBQ+ Network said. ” I don’t know why they pardoned him, it doesn’t make sense to me.”Let’s face it. Our lives are cheap, it seems like the most violent murders get light sentences when they kill a trans person.
Pemberton’s record of violence against trans people is of concern to the LGBTQ+ community, according to the South Coast LBTQ+ Network’s statement, because while Pemberton’s plans back in the United States are unknown, he may choose to resettle in New Bedford.