There has been an arrest in the killing of 23-year-old transgender woman Muhlaysia Booker. However, it appears the man might be a serial killer who possibly killed two other women who were not transgender in the Dallas, Texas area.
NBC reports, Kendrell Lavar Lyles, 33, has been arrested and charged him with three counts murder, including that of Muhlaysia Booker. He is being held without bond. Booker was shot and killed on May 18 and there are allegedly two other unidentified victims — one that was killed on May 22 and another on May 23.
Dallas police Maj. Max Geron told reporters, “We don’t know the motive at this point. We know that the meeting for one (Collin County) murder was, according to the witness, to engage in a drug transaction. The reason for the shooting is still unknown at this point.”
It is also possible that Lyles was involved in the murder of 26-year-old Chynal Lindsey, who was also transgender.
Back on April 13, Booker was brutually attacked on camera after she claimed she accidentally backed into another car while driving in a parking lot. She said 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 Edward Thomas, 29, $200 to assault Booker. It was unclear whether Thomas accepted the money. But there was no mistaking the assault, which was captured on video.
The below video is graphic. Watch at your own discretion.
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.
The trend appears to continue. In 2019, the first known transgender person killed was a Black woman in Alabama. Dana Martin, 31, was found dead in a vehicle from a gunshot wound in January.
The actual number of transgender victims was not clear. Physical attacks, harassment and sexual assaults against transgender people are often underreported. Added to the problem, police often identify victims by their birth gender instead of their self-identified gender.