Photo: Michelle Koselik in 1993.
BOSTON (CBS/AP) Denied!
Transgendered killer Michelle Kosilek's request for state-funded electrolysis treatments was shot down by a federal judge last week.
U.S. District Judge Mark said that the pretty-in-pink jailbird failed to prove "irreparable harm" or a "serious medical need" for a hairless body in prison.
Kosilek hung his head and dabbed at his eyes when Wolf announced the decision.
The convicted murderer's lawyer expressed disappointment to the judge, and had argued that having facial hair is "intensely personally stressful" to her client.
Born as Robert Kosilek, Michelle Kosilek has been waiting for years for a judge in Boston to rule on a request for a taxpayer-funded sex-change operation in order to complete the prisoner's transformation into a woman.
But the transgender prisoner had said that he would settle for electrolysis for the time being.
The state Department of Correction had argued that Kosilek has already received "significant hair removal" and remaining hair can be removed by shaving or using depilatories.
Once an addiction counselor, Kosilek was convicted of killing of his wife. He dumped the body in a car outside a local shopping mall and went on the run. Kosilek was ultimately captured in New Rochelle, NY.
In 1993, while in prison, he legally changed his name to Michelle.
Photo: Left, Robert Kosilek following his arraignment in 1990; Right, Koselik dressed up as Michelle in 1993.
Kosilek wanted the Massachusetts Department of Correction to pay for the sex-change, and sued the state twice for the funds, even though he had been receiving hormones at the prison. The prisoner said hormones and other treatments have not been enough to relieve his suffering, and said he would likely commit suicide if he does not get the surgery.
Massachusetts Correction Commissioner Kathleen Dennehy has said that if Kosilek has the surgery, prison officials believe Kosilek could end up being a target of sexual assault in prison.
"The safety and security concerns are enormous," Dennehy testified.
The case has become fodder for radio talk shows, where the topic of whether the state should pay for a sex-change operation for a convicted murderer often attracts outraged callers.
In addition to the cost — estimates for sex-change operations are in the $10,000 to $20,000 range — prison officials cite the safety risks of housing a male inmate who has been transformed into a female.
Sen. Bruce E. Tarr of Gloucester, Mass., has filed legislation barring the state from paying for the "sex reassignment" surgeries.
WHAT DO YOU THINK: Are you happy with the judge's ruling that Kosilek's request for electrolysis treatments is denied?
PREVIOUSLY ON CRIMESIDER
November 23, 2008 - Cross-Dressing Killer Robert Kosilek Wants You To Pay For Hair-Removal Treatments Behind Bars
August 1, 2008 - Tax Dollars At Work: Will State Pay for Wife-Killer's Sex Change?
August 10, 2008 - Pretty in Prison: Cross-Dressing Wife-Killer Wants Smooth Legs