Transgender woman brutally beaten by Texan mob shot dead a month later

Adam Forrest

A transgender woman who suffered a vicious beating during an outbreak of mob violence last month has been shot and killed in a street in Dallas, Texas.

Muhlaysia Booker, 23, was found by police officers on Valley Glen Drive early on Saturday morning following reports of a shooting in the residential neighbourhood.

Announcing the homicide investigation, Dallas Police Department’s Major Vincent Weddington said there was no evidence, at this stage, to link her death to the April attack inflicted by a group of men outside an apartment complex.

Video of the beating reportedly showed the 23-year-old being repeatedly punched and kicked. She later told officers her attackers had shouted homophobic slurs during the beating.

Major Weddington said Ms Booker had been found “lying face down” in the street shortly before 7am on 18 May. He explained officers were still investigating the 12 April incident in which she was “assaulted by several males”.

He said: “Subsequent to that offence the Dallas Police Department made one arrest for felony assault. The department is still attempting to identify others who participated in the assault.

“The department is actively investigating this offence and we are encouraging the public to come forward with information to bring closure to both these offences.”

Police detectives arrested 29-year-old Edward Thomas for his alleged role in the assault, which was flagged as a hate crime.

Muhlaysia Booker spoke at a news conference after she was beaten in April (CBSDFW)

Major Weddington said Mr Thomas was no longer in police custody, but there was no evidence he was linked to Ms Booker’s murder.

Ms Booker suffered concession and a fractured wrist from last month’s attack. Speaking at a press conference after her release from hospital, she said: “This time it was me. The next time could be someone else close to you.”

Last November, the FBI reported that 7,175 hate crimes were committed in the US in 2017, the most recent year for which the agency had compiled data. Of those, 1,130 were based on sexual orientation bias and 119 on gender identity bias.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, at least 26 transgender people were killed in the US in 2018.