By KPTV Staff
VANCOUVER, Washington (KPTV) — A Vancouver man has been given the maximum sentence for killing a transgender teenager in 2019.
Clark County judge David Gregerson sentenced David Bogdanov to 19.5 years in prison on Thursday for the murder of 17-year-old Nikki Kuhnhausen. Bogdanov declined to say anything in court.
Kuhnhausen’s mother spoke before the sentencing and asked that Bogdanov get the maximum sentence. She held a stuffed animal that belonged to her daughter while addressing the court.
On Aug. 27, Bogdanov was found guilty of second-degree murder and malicious harassment, which is a hate crime offense in Washington, in the death of Kuhnhausen. Kuhnhausen’s body was found on Dec. 7, 2019 on Larch Mountain in Clark County. The discovery came six months after Kuhnhausen’s family reported her missing.
Court documents state that Kuhnhausen communicated with Bogdanov through an online app. Investigators believe in early June, Kuhnhausen and Bogdanov met in-person for a hook up. When Bogdanov found out Kuhnhausen was biologically male, he strangled her to death in a rage of violence, detectives told FOX 12.
Vancouver police officers first interviewed Bogdanov in October, months before Kuhnhausen’s body was discovered. He admitted to meeting Kuhnhausen, according to court documents. Detectives said Bogdanov told them when Kuhnhausen revealed she was transgender, he felt “really, really disturbed” and kicked her out of his van before going directly to work.
However, investigators believed Bogdanov lied to them regarding his actions and whereabouts. Cell phone records, according to a police affidavit, show Bogdanov instead went to the Larch Mountain area – where Kuhnhausen’s remains were eventually found – and not directly to work.
The defense said it plans to appeal the case no matter the sentence.
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