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Illinois Finally Transfers Trans Inmate to Women’s Prison

Strawberry Hampton
Illinois Department of Corrections

The Department of Corrections continues to list her gender as male and to deadname the inmate.

The Illinois Department of Corrections has transferred transgender inmate Strawberry Hampton to a women's facility, following her year-long legal battle with the state.

Lawyers for Hampton told The Herald-News of Joliet that she moved this week from an all-male prison in Dixon to the Logan Correctional Center.

But the transfer came only after the ruling by a federal judge that the Department of Corrections risked violating Hampton's equal protection rights by refusing the move, said attorney Vanessa del Valle.

"The fight for Strawberry and for all trans women in IDOC has only just begun," del Valle said.

The Illinois Department of Corrections website continues to identify Hampton under her former name and lists her gender as male. The Herald-News referred to her by the male name and used "Strawberry" as a nickname, but used female pronouns in its reporting.

The state released a statement citing "100 percent compliance with the national standards designed to protect all inmates from sexual abuse" in its decisions on where to house Hampton.

The state argued in court that Hampton posed a sexual assault risk to female inmates because she has not yet undergone gender-confirmation surgery, though she has gone through hormone therapy.

Hampton appears to be the only trans inmate in an Illinois women's prison right now, according to del Valle. As of 2016, there were 28 trans women housed in men's prisons within the state, The Herald-News reports..

Hampton has alleged sexual abuse in the prison, claiming that at one point guards forced her and another trans inmate to have sex in front of them.

The state in court has cast doubt on Hampton's gender identity, even though a clinical psychiatrist testified that Hampton identified as female since age 5.

Hampton originally entered state custody after a 2014 arrest on burglary charges. She was sentenced to 10 years in prison.

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