ROANOKE, Va. (AP) - A transsexual Virginia prison inmate will soon be evaluated by a gender specialist as part of her lifelong quest for sex-change surgery.
U.S. District Court Judge James C. Turk in Roanoke says officials must grant Ophelia De'lonta's request to be examined for purposes of her lawsuit seeking a state-paid sex-change operation.
The Roanoke Times reports (http://bit.ly/156Fu0A) that Turk on Wednesday granted the request for the exam at De'Lonta's expense. He asked for a report of its findings within two months.
De'Lonta's attorneys have argued it is medically necessary that she be evaluated for her suitability for the procedure because of repeated castration attempts caused by gender identity disorder.
De'Lonta's suit claims that denying her sex-assignment surgery is a violation of her Eighth Amendment right against cruel and unusual punishment.