Morris Garner Charged with Murder in Buttocks Transplant Death

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Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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UPDATED: Sep 12, 2012

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Morris Garner's Mug ShotMorris Garner, a Jackson, Miss. transgender man, was charged with the murder of Georgia resident, Karima Gordon, who died from an injection used during an illegal buttocks transplant. 

Garner, who goes by the name Tracey Lynn Garner as a woman, faces charges of what is known as depraved-heart murder, which could result in a life sentence. Depraved-heart murder is when a defendant’s criminal actions are considered a “callous disregard for human life.” 

Attorney General Jim Hood said during a news conference that this may not be the only transplant Garner has undertaken; others may have gone under Garner’s knife for illegal breast and buttocks operations, according to the Associated Press. Garner is not a medical professional and has had no training or qualifications to perform transplants.

Authorities are currently testing the deadly substance Garner injected into 37-year-old Gordon. They say it may turn out to be an un-tested counterfeit type of silicone. 

It was the use of the counterfeit substance that led to Garner’s arrest by authorities of the Mississippi Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Division Intellectual Property Task Force, in collaboration with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Office of Criminal Investigations and the Mississippi Board of Medical Licensure. Aside from the murder investigation, these agencies are working together to determine the nature and source of the substance that killed Gordon, according to an NBC news article

Judge Melvin Priester, presiding over the case, denied Garner bond and stated that, “Based on the seriousness of the charge, the court does find that you are a danger to yourself, and more importantly, a danger to the community.”

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