The federal trial for Bridges McRae, the former Memphis Police officer charged with violating the civil rights of transgender woman Duanna Johnson, began this morning. The trial was originally scheduled for January, but it was postponed for reasons that are unclear.
In February 2008, McRae and officer James Swain were caught on video brutally beating Johnson in the lobby of the Shelby County Correction Center. The 18-minute video has no audio, but Johnson claimed McRae assaulted her after she refused to respond to homophobic slurs of "he/she" and "faggot." Read the Flyer's story about the beating here.
In an unrelated incident, Johnson was killed in North Memphis in November 2008.