Another Black transgender woman has been found dead. Her name is Michelle Washington (also known as Michelle Simone and Tameka) and she was found shot to death in North Philadelphia on Sunday morning.
Philadelphia Gay News reports that police arrived to the scene at approximately 5:07 a.m. She “suffered gunshot wounds to the head, body and buttock, according to police. She was transported to Temple University Hospital and pronounced dead at 5:33 a.m.” PGHLesbian.com reports her age to be 40 and that she lived in California, Nevada and studied at the Community College of Philadelphia.
Amber Hikes, Philadelphia’s Director of LGBTQ Affairs for the City, wrote on Facebook, “We must also work together to identify information about this crime and bring Tamika’s murderer to justice. At this time, police have no evidence that Tamika was targeted because of her gender identity. So I ask anyone with information about this incident to please come forward. If you are not comfortable talking with police alone or at a station, contact my office (215-686-0330). We will arrange for you to speak with someone either at our office or another location of your choosing. We need your help to get justice for Tamika.”
Back on April 13, she accidentally backed into another car while driving in the Royal Crest Apartments parking lot. She claimed a gun was pointed at her and was not allowed to leave unless she paid for the damage to the car. A crowd gathered and an unknown person allegedly offered $200 to Thomas to assault Booker. It was unclear whether Thomas accepted the money. Her graphic assault was captured on video and she was nearly killed but survived — only to be killed a little over a month later.
On May 14, the Human Rights Campaign reported 21-year-old Claire Legato was shot and killed in Cleveland. On April 15, she was allegedly shot in the head by a 61-year-old named John Booth due to argument he was having with her mother over a tax check. She would pass away at a hospital a month later. Gay Star News reports, Booth was charged with felonious assault in connection with the shooting and local issued a warrant for his arrest.
A report from the Human Rights Campaign said that 2018 was the second consecutive year that more than two-dozen members of the transgender community were known to have been killed. At least 26 transgender people were killed in 2018, the majority of them Black transgender women. Since 2013, there have been 128 killings of transgender people, of whom 80 percent were people of color.