By, Crystal S. Kauffman
Jacksonville, FL– The local transgender community believes that a possible serial killer is targeting them. According to Swartz, A. (2018), on June 24, 2018, the third black transgender woman was found with multiple gunshot wounds. The EMT’s pronounced the victim dead at the local motel where their body was found. There has been other transgender female victims inside the First Coast area some the first of the year. According to News4Jax.com (2018), mistakes made by the JSO has many LGBTQ advocates just trying to get their voices heard through local rallies on the steps of Jacksonville’s City Hall.
4 Local Shootings; 3 Murders
However, according to Swartz, A. (2018), the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office or (JSO) has been investigating two other transgender women of color, who were shot multiple times and died. The police must start looking into whether there is a serial killer at large in the nation’s transgender communities. Unfortunately, according to News4Jax.com (2018), Jacksonville’s three female transgender victims were misgendered, by the local police. The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office says that this is an open case that is still active and they are looking for leads from the general public who knew the victim. More frustrating is the Sheriff’s has not spoken to the public about these murders and advocate groups are getting angry and want to hear that a transgender female’s life matters. According to Swartz, A. (2018), JSO has said that they do not believe the shootings are related to a single killer.
Meet the Local Victims
Since, the first of the year 2018, three women of color from the local transgender community have been murdered by a killer or killers. According to Swartz, A., (2018), JSO has identified the victims correctly as: Cathalina James (age 24), Antonia English (AKA) Antash’a (age 38), and Celine Walker (age 36). The transgender victims were females of color, who were shot and killed in the River City since the first of the year. Two victims were found with multiple shots in different motels and different dates. The police have stated another black transgender woman was shot several times, but she has survived and is recovering from her wounds and she is a witness to identify her own shooter.
Local Serial Killer?
Some LGBTQ advocates now believe that there is a local and nationwide serial killer, who is murdering female transgender women of color. The local community is in fear that a serial killer has been killing transgender women of color who are actively living as women within the local communities. Meanwhile, according to News4Jax.com (2018), the local police or JSO has left the entire transgender community feeling unprotected and scared. The police are not riding in their communities and they have already made mistakes by misgendering the victims when they released their identity as their male birth name. However, each murdered victim was living openly as a female in their own neighborhood and community.
No Confirmation from JSO
The local press and JSO have not confirmed that a local serial killer is actually targeting the local transgender community especially women of color. According to News4Jax.com ( 2018), the Local activists and LGBTQ supporters have waited for the local officials to admit that there is a killer or killers within the local transgender community. The three victims would have been recognized as a female within her circle of friends and family. This mistake by JSO has made many LBGTQ community advocates angry enough to raise their own opinion about how the police has mishandled these crucial investigations by misgendering the victims at the beginning.
Trans Lives Matter
According to Newsjax.com (2018), the local activists organized and held a Trans Lives Matter Rally in front of the local courthouse and City Hall on Wednesday the June 24, 2018. This rally brought several dozens of local residents together, who are calling upon their elected local officials to act like they care about the violence that is plaguing several cities in the transgender community. The entire LGBTQ community is asking for proper changes that will help find the killer or killers faster by not misgendering the victims. They activist and advocates want proper changes throughout the entire police investigation, but this is community is terrified and needs to finally hear from the local officials that were elected to keep the entire city safe. However, every transgender female who became a murder or gunshot victim deserves to be remembered and had the right to live, but someone killed them for their own personal reasons and they need to be stopped.
Nationwide Serial Killer?
Currently, there has been fourteen transgender women, who have been murdered since the first of the year. According to the Human Rights Group (2018), 28 transgender women were murdered in 2017 and the organization believes that there may be a serial killer that is lurking in the transgender community. The organization also believes that the local police departments are mishandling these murder investigations. The LGBTQ advocates believe that there is a serial killer that is killing transgender women of color.. According to the Human Rights Group (2018), the entire transgender community, but mostly women of color are being targeted, attacked and murdered. Some victims have survived and are recovering, but police have not confirmed anything about a nationwide serial killer or that the violence has increased in the transgender communities all over America.
The Victims Are Not Forgotten
The Human Rights Group Website has compiled a list of the victims who have been assaulted or killed in each city, in order to show how transgender women of color are being targeted within their own communities. According to Swartz, A. (2018), the beginning of the year of 2018, there has been 14 transgender women of color that have been killed across the nation. In 2017, there were 28 murders of transgender women of color across America. The LGBTQ advocates believe that there is a serial killer lurking and that all local police departments need to do more to protect the transgender communities According to Human Rights Group (2018), each victim had already begun living full time as a woman of color within their local area. Currently, the nation’s police departments are handling each case as separate incidents, yet LGBTQ advocates are asking the police to handle each of these cases as a serial killer is actively targeting and killing transgender female victims in their own community.
Stay Safe Always
Never meet anyone that you don’t know. No matter what a person says, stand your ground and in public to buy stuff. Be cautious and never meet anyone at a motel, since that is where some transgender victims were shot and killed. Always use the buddy system when going out, because the killer or killers will look for someone who is alone or someone they can lure to a private place like a motel. Look for someone who doesn’t seem to belong in the transgender community. Therefore, stay safe by taking the proper precautions and watch out for others who are within the transgendered community.
Swartz, A. (2018) A transgender has just been killed in Jacksonville, Florida-the city’s third homicide this year.
Retrieved on July 18, 2018 from the World Wide Web
Human Rights Group (2018) Violence Against the transgender community in 2018
Retrieved on July 3, 2018 from the World Wide Web
News4Jax.com (2018) LBGTQ Community Living in Fear After Attacks on Trans Women
Retrieved on July 3, 2018 from the World Wide Web