A transgender woman who was attacked in April was recently found dead.
In April, 23-year-old Muhlaysia Booker was brutally beaten after getting in a minor traffic accident in the parking lot of an apartment complex. Footage of the incident went viral and Dallas’ mayor called it an act of “mob violence.”
Police identified 29-year-old Edward Thomas as one of the attackers in the video. Thomas was held in custody but later released.
On May 19, Dallas police announced that officers found Booker “lying face down in the street.” They said they responded to a report of a shooting when they found Booker’s body. Police claim no evidence linked the homicide to the April attack and that they are investigating her death.
According to the Human Rights Campaign, at least 26 trans people were killed in the U.S. in 2018, a majority of whom were Black transgender women. Experts say the actual statistics are likely higher since police department aren’t required to report such crimes to central database and are known to release incorrect names or genders.
Public figures, including 2020 presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke, have acknowledged Booker’s death and highlighted a great need for more protections for trans women.