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Judge: Transgender inmate has right to evaluation

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RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR)–A transgender Virginia inmate is one step closer to getting the state to pay for her sex-change operation behind bars.

According to Watchdog.org, a U.S. District Court Judge ruled that Ophelia De’Lonta, 53, has the right to be evaluated by a gender identity specialist. That person will decide whether the $20,000 surgery is medically necessary for De’Lonta.

If the procedure is necessary, and the court agrees, the Virginia Department of Corrections will have to pay for it.

De’Lonta was born Michael Stokes. She is serving 73 years in prison for bank robbery.