Payette Transgender Woman Awaits Arson, Weapons Trial in Isolation

Boise Weekly City Desk Jody May-Chang

By Jody May-Chang
Originally published on BoiseWeekly.com Dec. 7, 2010

Monday, Dec. 6, Catherine Carlson, 53, was in Payette Country Court for a preliminary hearing after a psychological evaluation earlier this month deemed her competent to stand trial.

After over an hour of testimony by city and county officials and first responders to the July 11 incident where Carlson set fire to her Payette trailer, Judge A. Lynn Krogh, found “probable cause” to proceed with the case. Carlson is scheduled to be arraigned on January 7 where a trial date will likely be set.

Facing up to 40 years in state prison, Carlson said she sees herself a martyr for an issue she has been fighting in Idaho for several years: dignity and respect for transgender citizens.

Carlson is a transgender woman who had a legal name change in California as a prerequisite to sexual reassignment surgery she had 30 years ago.

According to Carlson, the state of Idaho was not aware of her male history until it was revealed in court over a civil matter more than a decade ago by her own mother. Carlson said ever since Idaho has listed her male name as an a.k.a. despite her efforts to have the name removed. Continue reading