Gay panic defense
The gay panic defense is a legal strategy in which a defendant claims they acted in a state of violent, temporary insanity, committing assault or murder, because of unwanted same-sex sexual advances. A defendant may allege to have found the same-sex sexual advances so offensive or frightening that they were provoked into reacting, were acting in self-defense, were of diminished capacity, or were temporarily insane, and that this circumstance is exculpatory or mitigating.Rooted in both homophobia and transphobia, trans panic is a closely related defense applied in cases of assault, manslaughter, or murder of a transgender individual, with whom the assailant(s) engaged in sexual relations unaware that the victim is transgender until seeing them naked, or further into or after sexual activity.Broadly, the defenses may be called the gay and trans panic defense or the LGBTQ+ panic defense. They are typically used by heterosexual cisgender men against gay men and trans women.
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