UPDATE: Suspect arrested in D.C. shooting

Police in Washington, D.C., have charged Darryl Willard with “assault with intent to kill while armed,” in connection with the shooting early Monday of a transgender woman in southeast D.C.

Washington, D.C. police are investigating the death of this unidentified person who was found wearing facial make-up and carrying a pair of light-colored heels

According to the Washington Post, after being shot at about 1:50 a.m. in the 2300 block of Savannah Street SE, the victim walked to the Seventh District Police Headquarters to report the crime. The Post reports that the victim knew her attacker and gave his name to police. Willard later turned himself in to authorities.

The victim, who is not named in the newspaper’s article, was taken to the hospital and is expected to recover from her injuries.

In the meantime, police continue to investigate the circumstances surrounding the death of a man whose body was found early Saturday, according to reports by the Associated Press. Police said that when the man’s body was found, he had makeup on his face and had with him a pair of light-colored high-heel shoes. The man appears to be Hispanic or Middle Eastern and between the ages of 25 and 30.

Police said they have no information on whether the dead man was gay or transgender, and that his body showed no signs of trauma.

The Monday shooting was the fourth time in less than two months that a transgender woman has been shot or shot at in the D.C. area. On July 20, Lashai Mclean died after being shot by a man who approached her as she walked with a friend in the city’s Northeast section. The man asked Mclean a question and then pulled a gun and shot her before she could answer, according to the friend, who was uninjured.

Eleven days later and just blocks away from the site of Mclean’s murder, a suspect approached another trans woman, asked for change and then pulled a gun and shot at her before she could answer. The shot missed and the woman was uninjured.

And in August, a D.C. police officer on medical leave was arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon after he stood on the hood of a car and fired into the car containing two men and two trans women. One of the men was injured slightly in the attack.

—  admin

Coincidence or pattern? Another trans-related shooting in D.C.

Just two weeks after trans woman Lashai Mclean was shot and killed in northeast Washington, D.C., another trans-related shooting happened Sunday, July 31 near the same location, according to this report in the Metro Weekly.

Lashai Mclean

Tonya Harrell, also a trans woman, was shot at by a “black male, 17-19 years old,” but was uninjured.

The suspect approached Harrell on the street at approximately 2:45 a.m. Sunday and demanded change, according to police reports. Police reports say that without waiting for her to reply, the man shot at her with a semi-automatic handgun. Fortunately, the suspect missed and Harrell was not injured.

”Both cases involved transgender victims,” according to the MPD press release referenced by the Metro Weekly report, referring to the murder of Mclean and the attack on McLean. “Due to the similarities of the victims’ sexual self-identification, M.O., locations, and lookout for suspects, the cases are being investigated as a potential emerging pattern.”

The MPD press release adds that the Sixth District is working with the Gay and Lesbian Liaison Unit, as well as Transgender Health Empowerment (THE) and the Prince George’s County Police Department to ”enhance patrol efforts in the area” where the near-identical shootings happened.

The suspects in Mclean’s murder were described as “two black males,” who remain at large. Could this be a pattern of hate crimes or just an unfortunate coincidence?

MPD Deputy Chief Diane Groomes said that while she can’t confirm the shooting is related to the July 20 killing of Mclean, the circumstances are ”identical.”

—  admin