Pemberton guilty of homicide in Laude case, sentenced to up to 12 yrs
The Olongapo City Regional Trial Court has found Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton guilty of homicide for the killing of Filipino transgender woman Jeffrey “Jennifer” Laude.
Pemberton is sentenced to minimum of six years to maximum of 12 years imprisonment.
The court on Tuesday said the prosecution failed to establish that there was aggravating circumstances of treachery and abuse of superior strength so as to convict him of murder.
In August, Pemberton in his testimony admitted choking Laude unconscious during a fight when he discovered she was a transgender.
The court said that when Pemberton met Laude dressed as a schoolgirl and offering sex, he immediately agreed. While inside the motel, he got excited but “felt something different, something that was not supposed to be there and realized that [Laude] was a dude,” which he said he found revolting.
“He was so enraged and in the heat of passion arm-locked, dragged him [Laude] inside the bathroom and dunked his head in the toilet bowl,” the court said, noting all that happened immediately after he discovered that Laude was a man.
Such act, the court said, fell under the mitigating circumstance of “passion and obfuscation” as stated under Article 13 (6) of the Revised Penal Code. IDL/RC
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