Man pleads not guilty to charges in transgender teen’s death

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HOUSTON, Mo. – A 22-year-old southern Missouri man has pleaded not guilty to abandonment of a corpse and tampering with evidence in the killing of a transgender teenager whose body was burned.

The West Plains Daily Quill reports that 22-year-old James Thomas Grigsby, of Thayer, entered the plea after waiving formal arraignment Tuesday. Three others were charged with first-degree murder in the death of 17-year-old Ally Lee Steinfeld.

Auhorities identified the teen by her birth name, Joseph Matthew Steinfeld Jr., after her remains were found last month in the town of Cabool, near the mobile home of one of the suspects. Court records say her eyes were gouged out and she’d been stabbed in the genitals.

Grigsby is accused of hiding what appeared to be burnt human remains after the killing.