The trial of a man accused of killing a transgender woman last November in Syracuse, New York opened Monday, Newsday reported.

Twenty-two-year-old Lateisha Green was killed on November 14, a Friday, sitting in a car parked outside a friend's house. She, her openly gay brother Mark Cannon, and a third person were in the car while people in the home yelled gay slurs at them, police say.

“Dwight DeLee goes into the residence at 411 Seymour Street, returns with a 22 caliber rifle, puts the rifle to the driver's side window of that vehicle and fires one round,” said Syracuse Police Chief Gary Miguel. “And that one round strikes Mark Cannon in the arm, and continues on and strikes Moses Cannon [Lateisha Green] in the chest area.”

Mark Cannon, 18, managed to drive the car to the family's home for help.

Cannon was also the first to testify after lawyers delivered their opening arguments Monday afternoon, telling jurors about the night Green was shot. He will return to the stand to be cross-examined by DeLee's attorney Tuesday.

Prosecutors have charged DeLee with second-degree murder as a hate crime and criminal possession of a weapon. A hate crimes conviction would add 5 years to the minimum sentence of 15 years to life in prison. It is Onondaga County's first prosecution of a sexual orientation hate crime murder case.

New York state added sexual orientation to the list of prosecutable hate crimes nine years ago but the statute does not include gender identity or expression. Assembly members passed a bill earlier in the year that would add transgender protections, but senators have yet to act on it.

At a press event before the trial's opening, Green's parents and brother called for justice and urged legislators to pass transgender protections.

“By sharing Teish's story, we hope to break a cycle,” said Rhonda Gary, an aunt who spoke on behalf of the family.

“Teish's courage to live openly and proudly gives us the strength to tell her story so that others will never have to know the feeling of losing a family member or friend because they are different,” Gary said.

Green transitioned at the age of 16, and received a slash to the face from a high school peer for dressing like a woman, but her extended family supported her decision, Gary said.

“But we couldn't shield her. She regularly received death threats and was beaten up by her peers in schools. We will never get to watch Teish achieve her goals, simply because someone was blinded by their bias against Teish and who she was,” Gary added.

DeLee was collared by police two days after the shooting, on a Sunday. At the time, Police Chief Miguel told reporters: “Our suspect took a rifle and shot and killed this person, wounding also his brother, for the sole purpose that he didn't care for the sexual preference of our victim,” then added, “And isn't that sad?”