NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP)– A man who pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the 2013 death of a transgender woman will spend 12 years in prison.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. says James Dixon was sentenced Tuesday in the death of 21-year-old Islan Nettles. Prosecutors had recommended a 17-year sentence.
The victim was one of three transgender women who encountered a group of about seven young men on a Harlem street on Aug. 17, 2013.
Dixon flirted with Nettles before realizing she was transgender. Then he punched her in the face; she fell and her head hit the pavement. He hit her some more before fleeing. She died five days later.
“I loved my baby – like I said, a handsome man and a beautiful woman,” the victim’s mother, Delores Nettles, said shortly after her death.
Vance says members of the transgender community are “far too often the targets of violent crime.”
He says he hopes the plea brings some comfort to Nettles’ family and friends.
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