Trans inmate convicted of strangling 11-month-old baby to death files lawsuit after being prohibited from wearing hijab

In addition to identifying as a woman, Cordellionè also identifies as Muslim.

Libby Emmons Brooklyn NY

Trans inmate Autumn Cordellionè, formerly known as Johnathan C. Richardson, has brought suit against the prison chaplain over not being permitted to wear a hijab outside of Cordellionè's cell. In addition to identifying as a woman, Cordellionè also identifies as Muslim.

Cordellionè is serving 55 years in an Indiana prison for murdering his step-daughter. Fox News and the New York Post refer to Cordellionè with she/her pronouns. The baby murderer has demanded $150,000 in damages for not being allowed to wear the traditional religious garb of a Muslim woman.

Cordellionè said he wishes to wear the modesty garment "anywhere I go in the facility." Cordellionè has tattoos covering his face, which are forbidden in Islam. Despite this, Cordellionè said in the suit that "I informed [the chaplain] that I wear the hajib [sic] in order to cover my head and ears for modesty purposes, as I am an Islamic practicing transwoman."

However, the chaplain reminded Cordellionè that he had listed his religious preference as "Wiccan," not Muslim. Wicca is a pagan religion revolving around the earth. Cordellionè countered that he practices "a diversity of faiths in order to custom tailor my spiritual beliefs to my spiritual needs."

While Cordellionè was on trial for the 2001 strangulation, he was discussing the charges against him with an officer, and stated "well all I know is I killed the little f*cking bitch."

Cordellionè has also demanded that the state of Indiana pay for his sex change surgery and has filed a lawsuit demanding it. He is represented by the ACLU who is contesting the Indiana law that prevents the Department of Corrections from paying for inmate's sex change surgeries.

"The ACLU already gave this convicted murderer of an 11-month-old baby a voice when they tried to make taxpayers foot the bill for his ridiculous gender transition surgery request," a spokesperson from Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita's said. 

The ACLU said the sex change surgery was a "medical necessity." They filed the suit in August 2023, saying that Cordellionè was "diagnosed with gender dysphoria and was prescribed a female hormone and testosterone blocker" in 2020 and has been consistently taking these drugs. 

"Although the hormones have helped to ameliorate the debilitating symptoms of her gender dysphoria, they have not relieved these symptoms entirely insofar as she continues to experience
serious depression and anxiety. Accordingly, at this point gender-affirming surgery is
necessary so that her physical identity can be aligned with her gender identity and so her gender dysphoria can be ameliorated," the ACLU said, citing the new Indiana law as the reason why that never moved forward.

The ACLU claims that not giving an inmate a requested sex change surgery is cruel and unusual punishment per the 8th Amendment and is discriminatory under the 14th Amendment.

"Our office didn’t let that happen because regular, law-abiding Hoosiers want to see justice served — not a killer being catered to while serving time behind bars," they continued.

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