Transgender woman files claim against DMV

December 10, 2010 12:49:19 AM PST
A transgender woman went to get a new driver's license, but she got traumatized instead.

Amber Yust, 23, received some disturbing mail after she left the San Francisco DMV office. She says that instead of helping her with her gender change, the clerk sent her letters and a DVD trying to convince her not to do it.

The movie says, "What is hell? It is a place of torment where all the senses and powers of the damned shall have their appropriate torment."

Yust says she received the video "Death And The Journey To Hell" in the mail along with letters urging her not to go through with a gender change.

She says the messages told her, "That what I am doing is evil and that I am going to burn in hell and that I should die."

Yust says one letter was from a clerk who helped her at the DMV. She went to the office on Fell Street in San Francisco in October to change her name and gender on her driver's license. A few days later, the letters and DVD arrived at her home.

"I'm actually really scared because this is someone who has all the information you would give to get a driver's license," says Yust.

She says the letter is from DMV employee Thomas Dimartini; he introduces himself as the employee who helped her says it's his understanding that the reason for most gender changes is homosexuality.

He writes, "If this orientation is the reason for an operation that has yet to occur, I beg you -- do not go through with it!"

Yust's attorney, Chris Dolan, says there's proof Dimartini harassed another transgender woman in August 2009.

"It was reported to his superiors, the Human Rights Commission filed a complaint, the DMV apologized, but then they allowed him to continue working there," says Dolan.

Yust and her attorney are hoping the court will put a stop to this behavior. They're also seeking compensation for what Yust has gone through.

"I want to make sure the same kind of thing doesn't happen to anyone else, so whatever steps are necessary to make sure that the DMV effectively assures that," says Yust.

Yust also filed a case against the state on Thursday.

The DMV says it can't comment of the case or Dimartini and could only tell ABC7 that he was not working at the DMV on Thursday.

ABC7 has attempted to reach Dimartini, but haven't been able to get a hold of him.


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