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Local child killer changes gender while on death row

Documents just filed in Marin County, California show Jason Michael Hann is now known as Jessica Marie Hann, and is now a female “to match my gender identity.”

California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Health Care Communications Chief Liz Gransee said as of February 2019, “10 patients statewide have been approved for gender-affirming surgery.” Due to HIPPA guidelines, she could not comment on specific inmates.

Hann’s changing mugshots reflect his transition from male to female, the gender now indicated on her birth certificate.

“Senate Bill 310 allows a state prisoner or county jail inmate the right to petition a court to obtain a name or gender change,” said CDCR Deputy Press Secretary Terry Thornton. “SB 310 requires CDCR to use the new name of the person who obtains a name change and to list the prior name only as an alias. CDCR updated Hann’s records and made notification to the victim on file on Feb. 14.”

On Feb. 21, 2014, an Indio judge sentenced then 40 year old Jason Hann to death for killing his 10 month old daughter, named Montana, in 2001. At the time, Hann and Montana’s mother, Krissy Lynn Werntz, now 39, were living in Desert Hot Springs.

Montana’s body was found in a Tupperware container wrapped in a plastic trash bag in an abandoned storage trailer the couple had left in Arkansas. The couple was arrested in Portland, Maine, where they were living with another son, who was suffering from life threatening injuries. That son was taken into foster care and later adopted.

The couple’s arrest led authorities to find the body of a second infant in a trailer in Arizona. Authorities determined that two month old boy had been killed before their daughter Montana, at some point when the couple was living in Vermont.

Hann was convicted first in Vermont, and extradited to Indio, where a jury recommended the death penalty.

“These kids never had a chance at life so it was more than deserved, and I think he tried to cover up the crime as well,” said alternate juror Bob Price.

“The Eighth Amendment of the US Constitution requires that prisons provide medically necessary treatment for inmates’ medical needs, ” said Thornton. California was the first state to pay for prisoner’s sex reassignment surgery.

Hann in still in custody at San Quentin, which is a male-only facility, and she is allowed personal property items in accordance with her gender identity, such as a bra, hair rollers, or makeup.

Werntz was sentenced to 15 years to life in prison for her role in Montana’s death. She is housed at Chowchilla, but some part of her case is being heard Friday in Indio.

Hann’s attorney did not return a call for comment.

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