U.S. Chief Judge Mark Wolf of the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts ordered the Massachusetts Department of Correction to hire an independent specialist to determine whether the state must provide convicted murderer Robert Kosilek electrolysis as he waits to undergo taxpayer-financed sex reassignment surgery.

In September, Wolf ruled that Kosilek, who strangled his wife, Cheryl McCaul, in 1990, is entitled to the surgery because it is a medically necessary treatment for his gender identity disorder.

Governor Deval Patrick’s administration will appeal Wolf’s ruling and has asked the court to delay his surgery.

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