What’s Current: ACLU defends executed murderer and rapist Duane Owen, claiming denial of cosmetic surgery caused ‘enormous suffering’

Duane Owen executed in the state of Florida on Thursday, sentenced to death for the 1984, rape and fatal stabbing of Karen Slattery, 14, and for the rape and deadly hammer attack on Georgianna Worden, 38. Owen also attacked two other women in Palm Beach County who survived.

The defense had argued Owen had dementia and gender dysphoria, but psychiatrists for the state said Owen had a good memory, that Owen had faked schizophrenia, showed no signs of “gender dysphoria,” and said instead that Owen was sexually sadistic. During court proceedings, Owen stated that he believed he had “absorbed the souls” of his victims and that they “still lived inside him.”

In response, the ACLU tweeted that the state of Florida had caused Owen “enormous suffering,” and that in denying Owen cosmetic surgery in prison, had “violated her right to be free from cruel and unusual punishment for the more than 30 years she was in state custody.”

Meghan Murphy

Founder & Editor

Meghan Murphy is a freelance writer and journalist from Vancouver, BC. She has been podcasting and writing about feminism since 2010 and has published work in numerous national and international publications, including The Spectator, UnHerd, Quillette, the CBC, New Statesman, Vice, Al Jazeera, The Globe and Mail, and more. Meghan completed a Masters degree in the department of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University in 2012 and is now exiled in Mexico with her very photogenic dog.