Man released in trans stabbing case
by Seth Hemmelgarn
A man who pleaded guilty to stabbing a transgender woman in an incident that started on a San Francisco Muni bus in 2015 has been released from jail.
Brodes Wayne Joynes, 56, had been headed to trial on charges including attempted murder and hate crime enhancements, but those charges were dismissed after he admitted in November to a charge of assault by means likely to produce great bodily injury.
Joynes has been in custody since his arrest the night of the incident. He was sentenced this week to four years in prison, but with credit for time served, he was released.
At Joynes' sentencing in San Francisco Superior Court Tuesday, January 3, exactly two years after the incident occurred, Assistant District Attorney Ben Mains read a statement from victim Samantha Hulsey in which she recalled seeing "pure hate" from Joynes and being "sure I was soon to die."
Hulsey said she'd moved to San Francisco seeking acceptance and stated, "I will not stop being myself."
"Too many of us die for this hate, and I will not forgive you," she said.
Deputy Public Defender Elizabeth Hilton told Judge Rene Navarro that Joynes hadn't acted "out of any hatred or animosity toward people with transgender identities," and "that's not what was going on in his mind that night."
Hilton said that Joynes, who's African-American, suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression, and that he and Hulsey have much in common as people who "feel marginalized" and "haven't been treated very well by society."
Video of Joynes lunging at Hulsey with a steak knife on a 49 Van Ness/Mission bus was shown at a preliminary hearing last year. Joynes allegedly threatened to kill Hulsey and her former partner, Rae Raucci, during the dispute, which started after Joynes complained about the bus's windows not being open.
Raucci testified that Joynes called her and Hulsey "faggots" and told them, "You're defrauding me by pretending to be women."
Eventually, the bus stopped near the now-shuttered McDonald's on Van Ness Avenue. Hulsey got off with Raucci and swung at Joynes, who then stabbed Hulsey in the chest.
Joynes, who's expected to serve three to four years parole, has been ordered to stay away from Hulsey and Raucci.
In court Tuesday, Hilton said that Joynes is "a lovely individual and a very talented artist." She submitted some of Joynes' work to the court so that it could be included in the docket.