Joanne Spencer

Joanne Spencer
Photo via Nothing To Do With Arbroath

Joanne Spencer, a violent male who identifies as a trans woman, was convicted of arson being reckless as to whether life was endangered, making threats to kill and possession of an offensive weapon in 2008.

Spencer, 47, was given an indeterminate sentence for public protection at Leeds Crown Court and ordered to serve at least three years before being considered for parole and was warned release “may well be many, many years hence”.

The court heard Spencer had attacked an elderly woman living nearby then the defendant set fire to their council property and had to be dragged out by emergency services and sectioned under the Mental Health Act. Spencer was wearing camouflage clothing and a gas mask to order to “die in the flames rather than from the fumes”.

Spencer later returned to the property to collect belongings and threatened to kill a taxi driver and racially abused him while brandishing a large hunting knife at head height. The man was left terrified and police had to use a Taser to subdue and arrest Spencer.

After reviewing Spencer’s long history of violent offences, including arson, a previous stabbing and using a 12-inch metal tube to beat someone around the head, the judge commented that “When you feel you have lost control of your life, you drink heavily and in drink you commit serious offences of violence.” The defence submitted in mitigation that “She has extremely deep-rooted difficulties relating to her gender and to failed surgery.”

Media reports

Yorkshire Evening Post http://www.yorkshireeveningpost.co.uk/news/sex-change-rambo-arsonist-jailed-1-2194354

Yorkshire Evening Post http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/sex-change-arsonist-faces-long-jail-term-1-2291058

Wakefield Express http://www.wakefieldexpress.co.uk/news/transsexual-locked-up-indefinitely-for-death-threat-and-arson-1-967097

Wakefield Express http://www.wakefieldexpress.co.uk/news/knife-threat-led-to-violent-rampage-1-967085