26 Dec 2008
TDoR list ref: tdor.info/26 Dec 2008
Michael and his transgender girlfriend Taysia Elzy where shot deadin their home by Christopher Conwell, 20.
Although Michael was not transgender, it is believed that he was murdered because he and Taysia Elzy were lovers.
This week we learned another LGBT couple was murdered in their home in Indianapolis, Ind. Taysia Elzy, 34, a transgender woman, and her boyfriend, 22-year-old Mike Hunt were found murdered in their home last week. Milton Lindgren, 70, and Eric Hendricks, 73, a gay couple, were murdered in their Indianapolis home this October. Last week’s tragic double-homicide are being covered extensively over at the Bilerico Project:
"If the double slaying is a hate crime, nothing will be done about it. Indiana doesn't have a hate crimes law; instead we have a 'hate crimes reporting' law, but there is no recourse if police departments don't report to the state. The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department stopped documenting hate crimes years ago."
While some local news stories seem to try to avoid using pronouns for both Elzy and Hunt, other news outlets relied on police descriptions of the couple as being two men leading “alternative lifestyles,” an unfair, inaccurate description. (See GLAAD’s Media Reference Guide for further explanation.) Blogs and online message boards are filling in the pieces of Elzy’s gender identity, and mainstream outlets are following suit. Reporter Francesca Jarosz over at the Indianapolis Star has done a great job in her coverage of the crime. Police arrested Christopher L. Conwell, 20, in conjunction with the murders Wednesday. It's been confirmed that the couple died of gunshot wounds and that Conwell was an acquaintence.
On July 14, 2010, Christopher Conwell was found guilty of both murders and sentenced to 55 years in prison for each of the murders, so that they should serve their sentences in extension of each other. furthermore, he was given 1 year imprisonment for illegal possession of a weapon, which was to be served in extension of the 2 times 55 years imprisonment.