A black transgender woman was found dead in a Dallas lake on June 1 in a case that police there are describing as “homicidal violence.” The death represents the third time in less than a year that a trans woman has been killed in that city.
Police found 26-year-old Chynal Lindsey shortly after 5:30 p.m. in White Rock Lake at 4100 West Lawther Drive in the northeastern part of Dallas.
The murder came just weeks after Muhlaysia Booker, another black trans woman, was found dead with gunshot wounds on May 18. Weeks before her death, Booker was verbally and physically attacked after a minor traffic accident when a group of men hurled anti-LGBTQ slurs at her before beating her to the ground.
Police had arrested one person — Edward Thomas — in connection to the post-accident beating, but authorities said after Booker’s death that there was “nothing to connect” Thomas to her death.
In October of last year, Brittany White — also a black trans woman — was murdered and found in a vehicle at 7100 Gayglen Drive, which is just southeast of the city center.
Violence against transgender women of color has continued to plague the nation, but the increasing number of those cases in Dallas in particular has raised questions about whether there is a serial killer targeting that demographic.
“Right now, we don’t have the evidence to substantiate that,” Dallas police Chief Reneé Hall said during a press conference on June 1.
Hall said the department reached out to the FBI for assistance in the case, but otherwise has no apparent leads.
“We are asking for our community’s assistance in this tragic event,” Hall said. “We don’t have all the answers and we’re looking for our community.”
Nationwide, the Human Rights Campaign has tallied eight transgender women who have been killed this year — and there does not appear to be any geographical patterns associated with their deaths outside of the two that have occurred in Dallas. The other women hailed from Pennsylvania, Ohio, Maryland, Tennessee, and Alabama.
There have also been multiple recent cases of trans asylum seekers who have died after spending time in ICE custody — including Johana Medina, a 25-year-old from El Salvador who was hospitalized while in ICE custody and died just days later. Roxsana Hernandez, another asylum seeker, died in ICE custody last year and autopsies revealed evidence of abuse. Both of those women were HIV-positive.
Due to misgendering, lack of evidence, and other reasons, there could be other unreported cases of trans women who have been killed.