Colorado could become the first state to build separate prison units for transgender felons

Colorado is poised to become the first state in the country with segregated holding cells for transgender women in prison, if a judge signs off on it. After a class action lawsuit was filed by several transgender inmates in 2019 against the Colorado Department of Corrections (CDOC) alleging discrimination, harassment and assault, a judge is scheduled to rule on a consent decree that would bring further changes – including surgical sex changes and hormone treatment – to the state’s penitentiary, Fox News Digital has learned. The consent decree, a court-ordered settlement in a legal dispute, would also require all trans women currently or previously in CDOC to receive a $2.1 million payout, depending on the severity of the alleged assault, discrimination and harassment while in prison. Rewards could range from $1,000 to $10,000 per plaintiff.TRANS INMATE WHO KILLED BABY AND IDENTIFIES AS MUSLIM WOMAN SUES CHAPLAIN FOR ALLEGEDLY NOT ALLOWING HIJABSeveral of the plaintiffs seeking judicial approval of the consent decree are currently serving life without parole for homicide and assault, according to court documents obtained by Fox News Digital. Keith Rivers, 46, now known as “Cupcake” is currently serving a life sentence for murdering a victim outside of a tavern in 1999. According to the class action lawsuit, Rivers came out as transgender in 2004 and has made “numerous requests for surgical treatment for her gender dysphoria,” which have been denied, “and she longs for competent talk therapy related to her gender dysphoria.”Another plaintiff, Andre Karpierz, who goes by “Lavinya,” 47, is also serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for first degree murder. Karpierz is currently being held in the Denver Womens Correctional Facility, according to CDOC records.The class action lawsuit states Karpierz began hormone replacement therapy in 2016 and “continues to suffer from severe depression related to her [gender dysphoria] and has lived in constant fear of being raped in the male facilities.”Jordan Gallentine, known as “Jane,” 33, is also serving prison time for “attempted suicide by cop” and assault. According to the lawsuit, Gallentine “lives in a constant state of severe anxiety and depression due to lack of medical treatment, lack of mental health treatment, and a persistent fear of sexual assault and a violent death.” ACLU SUES INDIANA OVER DENIAL OF SEX REASSIGNMENT SURGERY FOR INMATE WHO STRANGLED 11-MONTH-OLD TO DEATHPlaintiff Corwin Raven, 35, known as “Kandice,” is currently serving time for two separate assault charges and is scheduled to be released in 2026. According to court documents, Raven “has attempted suicide twice and attempted selfcastration as a means to deal with her severe gender dysphoria.””Her numerous requests for transition-related surgery have been denied by CDOC,” the lawsuit alleges.A spokesperson for CDOC told Fox News Digital in a statement they “anticipate [a decision] will happen soon, but there is no specific timeline,” for its finalization.According to court documents, the decree “substantially improves the medical and mental health care provided” to plaintiffs and guards them “from cross-gender searches … access to women’s canteen items (such as cosmetics), requires CDOC to appropriately identify” transgender inmates, “and provides improved training on transgender issues to CDOC staff, medical and mental health providers, and leadership.”Colorado isn’t the first state to expand its facilities to include transgender hormone treatment or surgical sex changes. A similar case in Washington last year resulted in the requirement to provide these same treatments to inmates. And this week, the Department of Justice ruled Utah’s corrections department discriminated against a transgender inmate by refusing hormone therapy.Colorado Republican Party chairman Dave Williams called the consent decree another step the “woke left” is taking toward “up-ending our criminal justice system.””We’re making accommodations for folks that we shouldn’t be making accommodations for,” Williams told Fox News Digital. “This is an outrageous situation.””Taxpayers shouldn’t be footing the bill so these people can feel better about themselves,” Williams said. “Especially if they’ve committed homicide.”The decree would enact several changes. First, it would create two separate housing units for transgender women inmates: the “Voluntary Transgender Unit” (VTU) at the men’s Sterling Correctional Facility, and the “Integration Unit” (IU) at the Denver Women’s Correctional Facility.DETRANSITIONERS SAY THEY FACE VITRIOL FROM TRANS ACTIVISTS THEY PREVIOUSLY CONSIDERED A ‘SECOND FAMILY’The original lawsuit, which was filed on behalf of more than 100 trans women in CDOC, alleged the CDOC “expose[d] them to harassment, rape, sexual assault, and other violence,” at the hands of guards and other inmates. According to one of the attorneys representing the plaintiffs, Paula Greisen, the decree is “designed to bring new safety measures to protect these women from victimization in the men’s prisons.”Greisen told Fox News Digital the decree would also “allow the class members to transition to gender affirming housing at the women’s facility, and ensures that necessary medical and mental health treatment will be provided.” “These changes have the overwhelming support of the transgender community and we are all confident that the Court will sign the decree,” she said. 
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