Abhorrent ‘Gay Panic’ Defense under Fire in Australia
Stephen Fry has backed an Australian Catholic priest’s petition to totally eliminate the “gay panic” defence from Queensland’s criminal courts.
Fry posted the petition on his Twitter account at the request of Queensland resident Mark Tweedale, as the number of signatories surpassed 10,000.
The petition should now trigger a debate in the Queensland parliament, following an assurance made by Ted Sorensen, LNP Member for the Queensland city of Hervey Bay.
The so-called “gay panic” partial defence has been invoked by defendants in murder cases trying to downgrade their charge to manslaughter.
The reasoning is that the victim had made a gay advance on his killer, and they lost control of their actions as a result.
Fry re-tweeted a request by Tweedale to publicise the efforts to ensure the law is eradicated.