Man charged with three murders was targeting LGBT+ people, police say

Sandra E Garcia

An 18-year-old man who was targeting members of the LGBT+ community was charged with first-degree murder in the killings of three people in a Detroit home, authorities said.

Officials said Devon Robinson shot the victims — two of whom were gay and one who was a transgender woman — on 25 May.

An investigation by Detroit police led to his arrest on Thursday, prosecutors said in a statement.

Officials said Mr Robinson also shot two other people who survived their injuries.

Maria Miller, an assistant prosecutor, said on Saturday that a motive would be revealed at a trial.

“It is alleged that these victims were targeted and killed because they were part of the LGBTQ community,” she said.

Officials identified those killed as Timothy Blancher and Alunte Davis who were gay; and Paris Cameron, a transgender woman.

It was unclear whether Mr Robinson knew the victims or had any previous interactions with them.

It was also unknown if there was any relationship among the victims or if those who were injured were gay or transgender.

“The alleged actions of this defendant are disturbing on so many levels, but the fact that this happened during Pride Month adds salt into the wound,” Kym Worthy, Wayne County prosecutor, said in a statement.

Alanna Maguire, president of the Fair Michigan Foundation, said, “This case illustrates the mortal danger faced by members of Detroit’s LGBTQ community, including transgender women of colour.”

The foundation’s Fair Michigan Justice Project promotes civil rights for gay, lesbian and transgender people in Michigan and works with law enforcement to help solve crimes against them.

Mr Robinson was charged with three counts of first-degree murder, two counts of assault with intent to murder and five counts of the use of a firearm in connection with a felony.

He was being held in jail and was scheduled to appear in court 21 June. It was not immediately clear on Saturday whether he had a lawyer.

The New York Times