UPDATED: 8:45 p.m. ET —
The Tallahassee police have identified the person killed in Wednesday’s officer-involved shooting, and social media reveals that the victim was transgender.
The person killed in the shooting has been identified as 38-year-old Tony McDade. Wednesday reports identified the person as a woman, according to the police. This coverage was reflected in NewsOne’s initial reporting.
However, many folks on social media have identified McDade as a Black transgender man.
“Tony McDade. HE was killed by Tallahassee police this morning. HE was unarmed. HE was a Black trans man,” wrote one Twitter user. “Say HIS name. Say HIS gender. HIS life matters.”
WFSU reports that McDade — according to their social media posts — sometimes went by she/her pronouns and sometimes they went by he/him pronounces indicating that they also could have been gender non-conforming.
According to Tallahasse Democrat, McDade posted a live video on Facebook before allegedly stabbing a man, vowing to get revenge on several men who allegedly attacked McDade the day before. Another clip circulated on Facebook showing a brutal attack on somebody who purportedly was McDade.
“You killed me,” McDade said in the live video. “I’m gonna kill you.” In the same clip, McDade said there would be a “standoff” with the law, saying, “I’m living suicidal right now.”
There is no word yet on whether the alleged attack against McDade by several men is being investigated as a hate crime. Cops said they are reviewing the social media clips and other details as part of the investigation.
On Wednesday, a Black person was shot and killed in Tallahassee and activists are bringing attention to what they call a trend in the city.
According to WCTV, the person was a suspect in a fatal stabbing incident on Wednesday, which led to an officer-involved shooting. Cops were on the scene at the Leon Arms Apartments just after 11 a.m. on the 25000 block of Holton Street.
The Tallahassee Police Department said the officers were in the area to investigate a stabbing, which resulted in a victim dying from their injuries. Cops say an officer spotted someone who matched the description of the suspect and they say the person was holding a gun.
“The suspect then made a move consistent with using the firearm against the officer, who fired their issued handgun, fatally striking the adult female suspect,” the TPD said in a release. The person died from gunshot wounds while the officer was uninjured and placed on administrative leave, according to police.
Although cops say the person — who has yet to be named — was armed, an eye witness said he encountered the person before they were killed, and he never mentioned that they had a gun.
The witness, who identified himself as being a resident of Leon Arms apartments, said the victim came to him asking for help because they said someone had been stabbed. The witness said he followed the person and when he rounded a corner, he heard a series of gunshots from police officers. He said it was “seven, eight rounds.” The witness also explained that he saw police pull up, hop out of their cars and just start shooting. He said no one screamed “freeze” or “hands up.”
According to WTXL, the Wednesday shooting marks the third officer-involved shooting in Tallahassee this year and members of the Tallahassee Community Action Committee (TCAC) are making noise.
TCAC organized a protest and social distancing vigil on Wednesday to bring attention to the three shootings.
The first shooting of the year occurred on March 20 with cops saying the suspect was killed because of an attempted carjacking. Officer Zackri Jones and Officer Justin Davidson were involved in the killing of 31-year-old Mychael Johnson.
According to WTXL, Davidson was the first to approach Johnson when cops say they witnessed Johnson’s attempts at two carjackings in the Indianhead Acres/Lehigh neighborhood around 7:30 p.m.
TPD says when Johnson started to flee, Davidson pursued him on foot and he fired his taser twice to try and take Johnson into custody. However, it didn’t work and that’s when cops say Davidson and the suspect physically fought.
Officer Jones eventually caught up with the two as they were fighting and he fired a single fatal shot at Johnson.
TCAC says Johnson was unarmed, and they’ve been demanding that TPD release video footage from the incident.
The second police-involved shooting happened on May 19 when Wilbon Cleveland Woodard was shot on North Monroe Street after cops were called because of an altercation in a restaurant parking lot.
The police say a confrontation between officers and Woodard led to the shooting, with cops saying Woodard was armed. He was eventually shot in the altercation and died succumbing to his wounds.
“There’s been no method of real accountability held because we still don’t know the name of the police officer who murdered Wilbon Woodard, and we still don’t know the name of the police officer who murdered the black woman today,” one Delilah Pierre told WTXL.
In the Woodard case, officers were, once again, placed on administrative leave while the incident was being investigated.
CORRECTION: An original version of this story incorrectly referred to the shooting victim as a woman. The text has been updated to reflect this correction.