Man found guilty in death of gender-fluid Iowa teenager

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Kedarie Johnson

WASHINGTON, Iowa (AP) — A second man has been found guilty of first-degree murder in the fatal shooting of a gender-fluid Iowa teenager that drew national attention.

The Hawk Eye reports that a Washington County jury convicted 26-year-old Jaron Purham on Friday in the 2016 death of 16-year-old Kedarie Johnson of Burlington. Purham faces a mandatory prison term of life when he’s sentenced Nov. 19.

Purham’s cousin, Jorge Sanders-Galvez, also was convicted last year of first-degree murder in the case. The Des Moines Register reported that the 23 year old was sentenced to life in prison.

Johnson’s relatives say he identified as both male and female. Prosecutors said Johnson was wearing a pink headband and hair extensions when Sanders-Galvez and Purham saw the teen at a store, followed him in their car, then took the teen to a Burlington home. Police say Johnson was sexually assaulted and tortured before being shot to death in an alley.

Purham has already served prison time in Missouri for his 2016 flight from police who were trying to arrest him in the Johnson case.

Related: Kedarie Johnson remembered as Confident, Joyful and Full of Life

Related: Man found guilty in death of gender-fluid Iowa teenager

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