India Clarke, a 25-year-old black transwoman, was found dead July 21 in a Tampa, Fla., park.
She is believed to be the 10th transwoman murdered in 2015, according to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs.
She was found with “obvious signs of homicidal violence to the upper body,” according to a Hillsborough County news release. Clarke was also described as a “male dressed in women’s clothing” in the report.
“I’m hurting all over right now. I love my child. This was my baby, my youngest child. I just want to know who did this. I’m praying to God every night they find the person who took part of my life away from me. My daughter did not deserve this,” Clarke’s mother, Thelma Clarke, told ABC News.
“India Clark’s death is a tragedy, which is made worse by egregious misgendering by local police and media,” said Chai Jindasurat, Co-Director of Community Organizing and Public Advocacy at New York City Anti Violence Project. “We must honor India Clarke, and all of the transgender women, especially teams women of color, killed in this epidemic by supporting the leadership of transgender women, public awareness and respect campaigns, speaking out against this violence, and protecting transgender people from harassment and discrimination.”
The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs’ (NCAVP) most recent report, Hate Violence Against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and HIV-Affected Communities in the United States in 2014, documented 20 anti-LGBT homicides in 2014. Of those 20 homicides, 55 percent of victims were transgender women, and half were transgender women of color.
The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s office is investigating it as a homicide.