Comment: And the victims were a married lesbian couple and their 19-year-old son. The kicker is that their killer is most likely going to a WOMEN's prison...

dana rvers murder transgender
A prominent trans activist has been sentenced for the 2016 triple homicide of a California lesbian couple and their son. Dana Rivers, born David Chester Warfield, has been handed a life sentence without the possibility of parole.

"It is a horrible thing to sentence someone to die in prison, and I don't take that lightly," Judge Scott Patton said during the court hearing held today. "But this is the most depraved crime I ever handled in the criminal justice system in 33 years. Frankly, you deserve to spend the rest of your life in prison."

The sentencing comes months after Rivers, 68, had been found guilty of the murders in November of last year. Rivers was denied a motion for a new trial, though his attorney had attempted to argue prosecutorial misconduct. Judge Patton dismissed the issues raised, labeling them "trivial" and "frankly quite ridiculous," while noting that the evidence for Rivers' guilt was "overwhelming."

rivers murder mugshot
© Alameda County Sheriff’s DepartmentWarfield/Rivers' mugshot
Rivers' crimes date back to November 11 of 2016, when police were called in response to the sound of gunshots being fired outside the home of Wright and Reed in Oakland, California. When authorities arrived, they found Rivers covered in blood and gasoline and fleeing from the house, which had been set ablaze.

When discovered by police, Rivers had been heading towards his black Harley Davidson motorcycle, which was parked outside of the home with the keys left in the ignition. When police searched the Harley, which Rivers affectionately referred to as "Barbie," they found blood on the bike and a bloody knife in its saddlebag.

A further search of Rivers' person revealed that he was in possession of a bloody screwdriver, a knife, brass knuckles, bullets, pepper spray and Benny Diambu-Wright's iPod, according to court documents.
dana rivers murder
© danarivers.netRivers at the 2002 San Francisco Pride Parade.
Examiners found that Charlotte Reed had been stabbed and bludgeoned dozens of times in addition to having gunshot wounds. Her partner, Patricia Wright, had been shot twice, and her son, Benny Diambu-Wright, who had just graduated from Berkeley High School, had been shot in the heart. The bodies of Wright, Reed, and Diambu-Wright were found inside the burning wreckage. Rivers was quickly taken into custody and booked at the Alameda County jail where he has remained since.

According to police reports, Rivers "began to make spontaneous statements about [his] involvement in the murders" while being arrested. Rivers ultimately confessed to killing the two women and their son, but entered a plea of not guilty on charges of triple homicide in 2017.

The case had first been set for trial in 2019, but was repeatedly delayed in order to accommodate an investigation into Rivers' mental health.
The trial finally began on October 31, 2022.
rivers transgender murder
Victims Patricia Wright [L], Benny Diambu-Wright [C], and Charlotte Reed [R]
Prosecutor Abigail Mulvihill of the Alameda County district attorney's office wrote in a trial brief that Reed had first met Rivers at the Veterans Affairs Center in Menlo Park in 2016. The year before, Rivers had joined an "all-female" motorcycle gang called The Deviants, which had ties to Hell's Angels, according to court testimony. Rivers was referred to as the "enforcer" of the gang, and he used the pseudonym "Edge."

Comment: Appropriate choice of gang name.

In February of 2016, Charlotte Reed began spending time with The Deviants, but she decided to leave after three months because it "became too political for her," according to court records.

After she left the club, Reed began to experience threats against her safety. The trial brief presented by Mulvihill claims that "there was backlash from the club for her departure," and a friend of Reed's recalled seeing Rivers "just sitting and staring at Ms. Reed" on one occasion at the Menlo Park.

Mulvihill's trial brief also states that Reed's daughter told police that she had become afraid that Rivers "wanted to hurt her mother."

Prior to the slayings, Rivers was a prominent trans activist known for fighting against "gender discrimination."

Rivers gained notoriety in 1999 after he was fired from Center High School in Sacramento County, California, for openly discussing his "sexuality and the importance of gender self-determination" in class with students.
dana rivers tweet murder
Members of the Center Unified School Board who voted for Rivers' dismissal argued that the decision had nothing to do with his gender identity. They instead cited concerns for the rights of parents, some of whom had complained to the school administrators that Rivers had been discussing inappropriate and sexual aspects of his 'transition' with students.

According to a 1999 article in The New York Times, one parent stated that Rivers had told the children he had been "sodomized as a youth and that he always felt he was a woman trapped in a man's body and that he was going to be changing into a woman in the fall. He should have gotten permission from the parents to say this."

Following the administration's decision not to renew his employment, Rivers subsequently initiated a widely-publicized discrimination lawsuit that launched his career as a trans activist and resulted in a compensatory award of $150,000. He appeared on the Today Show and Good Morning America, and had even been profiled in the New York Times, quickly elevating his profile as a respected LGBT advocate.

Rivers was a keynote speaker for the National Center for Lesbian Rights as well as for The Tiffany Club, an organization founded to promote the political interests of those with "gender confusion."

Rivers also spoke as a guest lecturer at several universities, including Stanford and UC Davis, and served as a Board Member for the International Foundation for Gender Education (IFGE).
rivers murder transgender
© Emilie Raguso/The Berkeley ScannerTriple murderer David Warfield AKA 'Dana Rivers' leaves court in a wheelchair after being sentenced to life in prison without parole, June 14, 2023.
Upon the announcement of Rivers' sentencing today, women's rights advocate Kara Dansky took to Twitter to celebrate the news, writing "for now, justice has prevailed."

Dansky noted reports that the mood in the courtroom had been "intense and dramatic," and that the judge had allegedly sent Rivers to San Quentin, a men's prison, for processing.

But under current California law, Rivers will likely find his way into a women's correctional institution due to his legal sex being "female."

Comment: ...which came about because of political activism by people like Warfield/Rivers. Neat trick, huh?

California has one of the most liberal gender self-identification policies in the country, something that has become a point of contention for women's rights advocates.

S.B-132, also known as the Transgender Respect, Agency, and Dignity Act, was signed into effect in January of 2021 by California Governor Gavin Newsom. The law provides inmates housing based on their self-declared gender identity status.

Almost immediately after the legal guideline went into effect, California correctional centers were hit with hundreds of transfer requests from male inmates seeking movement into women's facilities.

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has previously confirmed to Reduxx that prison transfer requests are based entirely off of a Gender Identity Questionnaire that could be issued during reception or requested by the inmate at any time during their incarceration.
California prisons gender identity
The CDCR Gender Identity Questionnaire. Source: CDCR Press Room
The Questionnaire is a form with a short series of questions in which inmates can declare their pronouns, honorifics, and gender identity.

Male inmates do not need to identify as transgender to request transfer, and can simply identify gender non-conforming, or non-binary.

Last year, Reduxx reported that a pedophile who had molested a 4-year-old girl had been moved to the California Institution for Women despite having been denied a gender and name change, and still legally being a male.