September 10, 2011 at 2:03 pm EDT | by Lou Chibbaro Jr.
D.C. police report ‘suspicious’ death of trans woman

D.C. police suspect a transgender woman who was found unconscious on the street at 11th and Fairmont streets, N.W., about 4 a.m. Saturday and who died a short time later at Howard University Hospital was the victim of a homicide.

But according to police sources, an official classification of the case as a murder won’t be made until the city’s Medical Examiner’s office completes an autopsy on the as yet unidentified woman.

Members of the police Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit, who were called to the scene where the woman was found, immediately contacted transgender activists Earline Budd and Ruby Corado, who are on a police LGBT community alert network, to provide assistance in the case.

Budd said the victim was also Latino and Corado, who coordinates a transgender Latino response group related to anti-LGBT violence, was expected to help police identify the victim.

About an hour after the fatally injured transgender woman was found at 11th and Fairmont streets, the GLLU was called to help in a separate case in which three transgender women were threatened by a suspect with a gun on the 4000 block of Minnesota Ave., S.E., according to a police source. The source said police arrested the suspect on a charge of assault with a dangerous weapon – bias related.

None of the victims were injured, the police source said.

Budd said the GLLU also contacted her about the assault incident told her the incident started on a Metro bus, where the victims were reportedly confronted by the suspect.

The Blade will provide updates on these incidents as information becomes available.


Lou Chibbaro Jr. has reported on the LGBT civil rights movement and the LGBT community for more than 30 years, beginning as a freelance writer and later as a staff reporter and currently as Senior News Reporter for the Washington Blade. He has chronicled LGBT-related developments as they have touched on a wide range of social, religious, and governmental institutions, including the White House, Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court, the military, local and national law enforcement agencies and the Catholic Church. Chibbaro has reported on LGBT issues and LGBT participation in local and national elections since 1976. He has covered the AIDS epidemic since it first surfaced in the early 1980s. Follow Lou

  • I live across the street from where this happened. I didn’t hear a thing and I feel badly that I could not have done something to stop this. I just wanted to let whoever did this know that there are children that live in the house where you left this person to die. Today they are riding their bikes and walking by the crime scene tape. Everyone has the right to live as they feel they should so long as they do not hurt other people and I hope the killers are apprehended and brought to full justice soon.

  • Oh Lord, here we go again. Another transgender woman found dead in the street at …get this… 4:00 am. Why wasn’t s/he at home in bed like all the rest of us? I know, some of you will assert s/he may have been running to the 7-11 for some morning cereal, returning home from a late night work shift, or among other possibilities, out for a very early morning run/walk. More like s/he was, as the recent others assaulted/murdered, plying the streets for some last minute action before the roosters start crowing and/or buying/dealing drugs. My money’s on the latter. But, let’s get that GLLU involved to conduct some real thorough community policing to try and build bridges between underserved groups and the cops. so these types of terrible/reprehensible scenarios don’t occur. Why doesn’t the DC “gender identity” community, en masse, get some serious psychological help to GET THEM OFF THE STREETS. Sweeties, believe me, you CAN earn some decent bucks instead of spreading your cheeks, both top and bottom.

    • Matthew Shepard was found unconscious and bleeding at 5 AM. Was he a prostitute?

    • Wow, Laurelboy, you kind of sound prejudiced, and un-educated yourself…Whats with this He/she bullshite? she was a woman, she should be respected as such, and no huh uh…we are not all prostitutes and drug addicts… what a stereotypical view you have of us. I suggest you are the one in need of counseling!

  • Second body dropped off on block of 11th and Fairmont. First one, a teen from the burbs who was dumped in trash can. And, this incident….

  • laureboy, a woman is dead. the facts surrounding this death are not yet known, including the time of death. another comment was made that this block served as a dumping site for yet another murder, but you make a lot of unfounded presumptions. you scorn this dead woman and an entire population. i will tell you this. your life must be truly painful. you must be truly alone. your repulsive and venomous comments, along with your complete lack of empathy, lead me to believe that you are the individual in need of psychological intervention. please consider getting some help.

    • It’s pretty clear that laurelboy2 is a massive transphobe who thinks that all trans women are prostitutes.

    • Laurelboy2 consistently is one of the 1st ppl to respond to posts regarding trans murders/attacks. The vitriol constantly spewed by him is disgusting & shows his ignorance to humanity. Obviously he has been spared the indignities of feeling subhuman by his own species, never been subjected to poverty on a scale unproportianant to most ppl around him while at the same time left feeling hopeles. He has neither shown an aptitude for looking at facts such as the victim was wearing 2 bracelets indicating she had been at 2 clubs earlier in the night nor has he appeared to educate himself on the strides the DC community is extending to reach out to the trans community by was of our mayor fumding a jobs pgrm specifically tailored to our disenfranchised & downtrodden sisters (& brothers). No, he must ALWAYS just assume they deserved whatever came to them resulting from an assumed action, making them not a victim but another statistic. Laurelboy is clearly a hatefilled bigot, that yes ought to look into getting help before such hatred manifests itself into him taking his own actions against those he wont take the time to understand on a humanistic level.

  • On Sunday morning, we don’t have the facts of this case. But it still seems a whole lot like ‘open season” has been declared for anti-LGBT hate speech, harassment, threats, assaults and homicides!

    Every time perpetrator(s) of a hate crime in DC– whether small or large– don’t get seriously prosecuted, then MPD/ USAO-DC sends out a terrible message to would-be hate crimes perpetrators. That message, however unintended, likely appears clear, especially to twisted, hateful minds– CRIMES against LGBT residents and visitors really don’t matter much in DC.

    The unapologetic anti-LGBT hate speech, broadcast over the radio– calling our elected openly gay members of the Council, “faggots”– is just another example, of that growing anti-LGBT hate conduct trend.

  • @laurelboy: you seem to imply that if that poor girl was a prostitute, then the murder was justified. You seem to imply that people who do not follow your particular slant of moral should be gotten rid of.

  • I blame the religious leaders and clergy who preach against the LGBT community in such a hateful way and anyone else who spreads hate…they breed hate and yet wash their hands claiming that they do not advocate violence. Never the less, blood is on their hands…But..I do not hate them…in return I offer Love, Please, if you truly believe in a God you know that preaching hate is wrong.

  • @fausto fernandez: No, murder is never justifiable. What a horrible notion. But, with one after another after another incident involving trans women at weird hours of the morning in precarious situations within the last several weeks or so, obviously something is wrong with some, if not most, of the trans women. What are they doing? What are they missing? What’s the basis for their decision-making? What do they need? It sounds to me, on an objective level, that they need to start with counseling so they don’t enter into the abysmal/precarious situations they’re finding themselves, up to and including death. You can call me a bigot, prejudiced, uneducated, whatever you and the others want, (none of which is warranted based on my comments) but the facts speak for themselves. There is something afoul in the trans community. Perhaps you and the others are too blind, embarrassed, and/or simply unwilling, to recognize the obvious. ‘Nuff said.

  • Y’all speak of anti-LGBT hate as if it means something. LGBT is not a thing. There is no such community. There are just the cis gays and lesbians who exploit trans women for their political gains (Dan Savage, Barney Frank, et al). Those who are the most targeted for rape, torture, and murder, in this so-called ‘community’, are trans women of colour. Get that through your heads!

  • @laurelboy2: I have no idea how your comments got through moderation, but that’s quite a lot of transmisogynistic bull right there, and I’ve heard a lot of it. Trans women of colour are discriminated against on every level in every society that it ain’t funny. If you can’t get a ‘respectable’ job, you end having to sell your body. (Why is sexwork somehow bad anyways?) Why can’t trans women of colour find jobs? Because of people like you. You also say that there’s something psychologically wrong with trans women. Well, if some of us have psychological problems, so f’ing what? That is none of your problem. Most of our problems are because of people like you. Piss off, dude!

    Why can’t trans women walk on the streets at night without getting attacked? We have the same bloody right to safety and privacy as any cis male.

  • @Laurelboy..Face the facts yourself…Trans women are mostly forced into a lifestyle of prostitution out of necessity, this because there is very little available to us, and this because of prevailing attitudes towards us by people with little understanding. No Jobs..No housing, Abuse at every turn, and here you are more or less stating that we do this to ourselves! No sir. This is because of a failing of society to recognize our humanity and equality, and statements such as yours only contribute more to the problem! Nuff said!

    • Then your point begs the question of why do this to yourselves if you realize you’re more than likely predisposed to living a life of desperation and trauma? Why not seek counseling to help yourselves with the gender with which you were born? If I thought that doing X would more than likely cause Y to happen, I’d do all I could to avoid doing X! To assert it’s the victim’s fault might be a bit harsh, but, really, who chose to gender re-identify?? Look in the mirror for the answer. ‘Nuff said.

  • This woman was left to die in front of my house. No matter her choices this was a loss of life. All life is valuable. May her soul and family find peace

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