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Monday, December 2, 2013

Sasha Fleischman: Teen Lit on Fire Speaks to Reporters About Gender Identity (Video)

Posted By on Mon, Dec 2, 2013 at 9:17 AM

click to enlarge Sasha Fleishman is home - SCREEN-GRAB VIA ABC NEWS
  • screen-grab via ABC News
  • Sasha Fleishman is home

We don't know many people who are ecstatic about Mondays. In fact, 18-year-old Sasha Fleischman might be the one and only.

But the Maybeck High School senior has great reason to be feeling thankful about Monday: It's Sasha's first day back at school since the teen was lit on fire while riding the bus in Oakland last month.

On Nov. 5, Sasha, who neither identifies as male or female, fell asleep while riding the 57-bus in Oakland. Another passenger lit the teen's skirt on fire, which spread to Sasha's legs, leaving second and third-degree burns.

Police later arrested 16-year-old Richard Thomas, accusing the Oakland High School teen of the attack. Police say Thomas told them he started the fire because he's homophobic, but his attorney argued that it was a prank, not a hate crime. Still, prosecutors have charged Thomas with a hate crime and plan to try him as an adult.

After spending several weeks in the hospital, which included multiple skin grafting surgeries, Sasha returned home last week, just in time for a vegan Thanksgiving. ABC News caught up with the agender teen, who plans to use this incident as a chance to teach people about gender identity issues.

Watch this interview with Sasha:

Welcome home, Sasha.

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About The Author

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert

Erin Sherbert was the Online News Editor for SF Weekly from 2010 to 2015. She's a Texas native and has a closet full of cowboy boots to prove it.


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