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State faces new sex-change lawsuit from inmate

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UNDATED (WSAU)  A prisoner who sued for the right to have a sex-change operation now claims the state is not living up to the promises it made in settling that lawsuit. 48-year-old Scott Konitzer has filed a new lawsuit in federal court, accusing the state Corrections Department of falsely inducing him to settle the suit he brought in 2003.

Konitzer has gender identity disorder – and as part of the settlement, he dropped his demand for a sex-change operation in exchange for continuing non-surgical therapy. He said the state also promised to consider other therapies that experts might recommend for his disorder. But now, Konitzer said the state never intended to explore those other therapies – and they’ve limited his previous treatments which made him go bald and to consider suicide.

Konitzer is serving 123 years at the state prison in Portage for multiple armed robberies and for stabbing another prisoner. He changed his name to Donna – and once Republican legislators caught wind of that, they passed a law banning hormone treatments and tax-funded sex-change surgeries for prisoners.

Konitzer and two other inmates sued. And a federal appeals court threw out the state law, saying it violates constitutional protections against cruel-and-unusual punishment. Corrections’ officials have not commented on Konitzer’s new lawsuit.

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