United States

Community Reflects on Murder of Transgender Woman a Month After Viral Video of her Beating

A transgender woman, whose beating was caught on camera last month, was found shot to death over the weekend.

The news of Muhlaysia Booker's death came as a shock to many who knew her.

Those in the LGBTQ community are advocating for the safety of other transgender women of color.

A smile came across Kirk Myers' face as he reflected on his last interaction with Muhlaysia Booker.

"I think she called me on last week, well sent me a text, and said 'hey I need my phone bill paid.' So I cash app'd her money to pay her phone bill," said Myers.

Myers is CEO of Abounding Prosperity, a non-profit organization that often addresses needs within the LGBTQ community.

He said he'd known Booker for about three years.

"In the gay community we have families that we're born into and families that we choose," he said. "She called me uncle. So yeah we had a good relationship."

He said the previous attack on Booker had her on edge.

Booker was assaulted in the parking lot of Royal Crest Apartments, in the 3500 block of Wilhurt Avenue, on April 12. Dallas police flagged it as a possible hate crime.

Myers said she was working through the trauma of that incident.

"She had concerns and multiple times she indicated 'I don't want to do this and I wish it would just all go away,'" said Myers.

Leslie McMurray is coordinator for transgender advocacy at the Resource Center.

She said the cards were stacked against Booker.

"I would love to say that I was surprised but I'm not," said McMurray.

The average life expectancy for a woman in the US is roughly 80 years.

"For a transgender woman of color it's thirty-five," she said. "Who knows what her life would've become. She wasn't done painting her canvas yet," said McMurray.

Booker was just 23 years old.

Myers hopes that those who knew and loved her can carry her legacy and complete that canvas.

"She was brave and decided to speak out to prevent what ultimately happened to her happening to another woman like her," he said.

Police say Booker's murder is not currently being investigated as a hate crime.

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