December 18, 2014
Judge grants Manning name change
A judge in Kansas ruled that former US soldier Bradley Manning, who is serving 35 years in prison for turning over classified files to WikiLeaks, could change his name to reflect his desire to be treated as a woman.
Manning's name is legally changed to Chelsea Elizabeth Manning, according to the decision handed down by Leavenworth County District Judge David King.
In a statement issued following the ruling, Manning said he hopes his actions help lead the military and other institutions to recognize the needs of transgendered individuals, including a need for specialized healthcare.
Manning stated he wanted to be treated as a woman last year, a day after being sentenced to prison for leaking classified files to Wikileaks’ founder Julian Assange.
"As I transition into this next phase of my life, I want everyone to know the real me," he wrote in a statement at the time. "I am Chelsea Manning. I am a female. Given the way that I feel, and have felt since childhood.”