Tag Archives: philadelphia

Then and Now: The Murder Of Transgender Women. Same as it Ever Was.

Nizza_and_NettlesI decided to bring a little historical perspective to this update on the murder of Islan Nettles by mentioning another case, more than a decade prior, where a transwoman was murdered and the police are apparently unable or unwilling to do the right thing.

On December 22, 2002, transgender woman Nizah Morris was found naked in the street from the waist up, bleeding from a head wound. The last time any witnesses had seen her, she was climbing into a police car to receive a courtesy ride from Philadelphia police officer Elizabeth Skala. A summary of what happened afterwards can be found here.

Officer Skala testified that Morris asked to be dropped off at Chancellor St and S. Juniper St, two minutes distant driving from the bar and 45-minute walking distance from her home. One minute after being dropped off at 3:30am a motorist testified he called 911 reporting a woman she was laying on the street naked from the waist up, bleeding from her head.

The DA has refused to release the 911 records.

The entire thing is better explained at the link above, and screams “coverup” so loudly that you have to wonder WTF.

So flash forward 11 years, and we have the case of Islan Nettles, who was beaten to death on or about August 17, 2013 after she and a group of friends were attacked by a gang of eight men. After following them and taunting them with homophobic slurs, at least one man knocked Nettles to the ground and began a bit of the old ultra-violence – because that’s what we “subhumans” deserve, right? Ye-ah.

Nettles’ case quickly turned into a three-ring circus, with a friend of the defendant making a fake confession in the case, allegedly spurred on by the defendant’s mother. Even after these folks using the justice system like a plastic sex doll, the District Attorney’s office insists that they are “aggressively investigating” the case. The group Trans Women of Color of New York made this recent press release concerning the case:

It was revealed that no DNA evidence was collected from Paris Wilson at the scene of the crime, nor were witnesses rigorously questioned. Nor has it been explained why Simone Wilson, the suspect’s mother, was never held accountable for falsifying evidence when she persuaded a friend of her son to make a false confession which was later recanted. And perhaps most inexplicably, the D.A.’s office is claiming that all 10 surveillance cameras in the vicinity of the beating that lead to Islan Nettles’ death were broken.

Nope, nothing suspicious at all here!

The Transgender Body Count for July

French_Trans_Murder_MyleneMyléne, murdered July 25, 2013

I was asked why I had not been updating Transas City with some of the recent murders of transsexuals, and the reason was, well, they depressed me so much I wanted to avoid focusing on them. But that’s really self-defeating, and the word needs to get out.

July was a harsh month for transgender persons, especially transgender women. Below are reports of 6 transgender women who were murdered or brutally assaulted in just 3 weeks in July.

The week of July 8 (reports vary on what day it occurred), transgender woman Diamond Williams, 31, was murdered after having sexual relations with Charles Sargent, 43. Sargent, for reasons which aren’t completely known, murdered Diamond with a screwdriver and hatchet, dismembered her in his apartment, and dumped her body parts in a field in North Philadelphia. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/07/26/1226773/-Another-dead-transwoman-of-color-this-time-in-Philadelphia-again

On July 21 or 22, Dwayne Jones, a 16 year-old crossdresser or transgender woman in Jamaica was murdered after they attended a party dressed in women’s clothing. When someone at the party outed them as male, a gang of happy partygoers armed with knives and hatchets chased her into the night. Police found her body on the road, with multiple stab wounds and a gunshot wound. http://atlantablackstar.com/2013/08/02/group-jamaica-must-probe-transgender-teen-slaying/

On July 25, Jatupon Ratworabood, a transgender woman, was shot while out clubbing in Bangkok, Thailand. Her murderer alleges she sat between him and his friend while riding on a motorbike, she “molested him,” which in his worldview was punishable by immediate summary execution. http://www.bangkokpost.com/news/local/361710/transgender-shot-dead-in-khon-kaen

Also on July 25, a French transgender woman reported only as Myléne was brutally murdered with a hammer. The press in France, which is typically unkind to transgender persons, has referred to her as “he” and “male”, a crossdresser, etc. http://gaysportnews.com/2013/07/30/trans-woman-beaten-to-death-with-a-hammer-in-france/#sthash.IPOieIUd.GpOpvnSP.dpbs

On July 29 another transgender woman was killed in Turkey, making four this year, on top of 11 assaulted. Reported only as “Gaye,” she ran her own flower shop and had been in a relationship for 15 years. http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2013/07/transgender-woman-killed-in-istanbul-fourth-trans-victim-in-seven-months/

On July 30 another transgender woman was shot and remains in critical condition. It is not known in this case if her transgender status was responsible. http://www.philly.com/philly/blogs/dncrime/Woman-hospitalized-after-being-shot-inside-Northern-Liberties-apartment.html