New speculation is surrounding the death of a British primary school teacher who came out to her students as a transgender woman last year.
Jane Fae, a writer specializing in transgender issues, claims to have been given access to emails sent by Lucy Meadows, who was found dead at her Accrington, Lancashire home on March 19, The Guardian is reporting.
In a March 22 column for the New Statesman, Fae described the content of Meadows' emails as follows:
"She talks of her good luck in having a supportive head. But the stress of her situation is also visible. She complains bitterly of how she must leave her house by the back door, and arrive at school very early, or very late, in order to avoid the press pack.
She talks of the press offering other parents money for a picture of her; of how in the end they simply lifted an old picture from the Facebook pages of her brother and sister without permission."
Daily Mail writer Richard Littlejohn, who Fae says has been described in various press reports as "a bully" and "a murderer," has also come under significant fire since the news of Meadows' death broke.
A petition calling for Littlejohn to be fired from the Daily Mail has since been launched, pointing to an earlier article he penned on the Meadows' case which featured the headline, "He's not only in the wrong body... he's in the wrong job." That article has since been removed from the Mail's website, according to the petition.
"Throughout the article, Littlejohn repeatedly referred to Lucy as 'he,' and claimed that getting gender reassignment surgery showed that she didn't care for the children she taught," petition organizers write. "The Daily Mail may thrive on controversy to sell its tabloid papers, but even it knows it went too far this time."
Some believe Meadows now killed herself, though The Guardian stresses that the precise circumstances of her death have still not been made clear. On March 21, the publication reported that police were not treating the death as suspicious.
Meadows, 32, had been teaching at Accrington's St. Mary Magdalen's School before announcing she was transgender in a letter sent to her students' parents shortly before the holiday break.
"Mr. Upton has recently made a significant change in his life and will be transitioning to live as a woman," the letter read in part. "After the Christmas break, she will return to work as Miss Meadows."
A statement cited by The Bolton News quoted Meadows as saying at the time, "This has been a long and difficult journey for me, and it was certainly not an easy decision to make." After thanking colleagues for their support, she added, "I'd now ask for my privacy to be respected so that I can continue with my job, which I'm committed to and which I enjoy very much."
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