By Parker Marie Molloy
Originally published on Advocate.com March 19 2014 5:00 PM ET
Donna Perry, a 62-year-old transgender woman from Spokane, Wash., is on trial for the 1990 murder of three female sex workers. Bizarrely, she is claiming she couldn't have been responsible for the murders, as she didn't exist at the time of the crime — instead putting any blame for her actions on Douglas Perry, her pre-transition self.
Perry, who has been charged in the murders of Yolanda Sapp, Kathleen Brisbois, and Nickie Lowe, is claiming it wasn't Donna Perry who killed the women but that the culprit may have been Douglas Perry. Douglas is the name Perry was given at birth.
"For some people, it's a metaphor," New York-based psychiatrist Jack Drescher told ABC News. "[They say] 'I was a different person before I came out.' It's a certain way that they use the metaphor when transitioning for those who were very unhappy before and now are happy. It's different when a person makes a claim that somehow they have no linkage to the person they used to be — that would be more of a disturbed presentation."
Perry asserts that she cannot be sure if she murdered the women, saying, "I don't know if Doug did or not. It was 20 years ago, and I have no idea whether he did or did not."
According to police, Perry's DNA and fingerprints were found at the scene. Detectives recovered a .22 caliber cartridge matching the bullets recovered from the victims in a truck registered to Perry.
Perry is currently being held on $1 million bond at the Spokane County Jail.