McElveen becomes the second transgender person to be murdered in New Orleans this week, coming just a few days after the tragic murder of Chyna Doll Dupree on February 25th. She is now the seventh reported murder of a transgender person and we are only two months into 2017. Police are saying there is no connection between the two investigations.
According to The Times-Picayune, a witness who claimed to be an acquaintance McElveen’s said he saw a black car stop near the intersection of Columbus St. and that the car’s driver was arguing with McElveen, who was seated in the passenger seat. The witness claims he then saw the driver reach over McElveen, open the passenger-side door, and then get out of the car with a knife in his hand. He then pulled McElveen out of the car and slammed her to the ground before driving away.
The police found McElveen as she was suffering from several stab wounds. She was rushed to University Medical Center, where she later died from her injuries. Yesterday, Ciara McElveen, a transgender woman of color, was stabbed to death in New Orleans. Her tragic death comes after Chyna Doll Dupree, a Black transgender woman, was killed following the sound of gunshots on Saturday night.
Syria Sinclaire, a local transgender advocate who was a friend of McElveen, said they worked together doing outreach for the homeless. “I’m so thrown right now,” Sinclaire told mic.com. “Trans women don’t want any special privileges. We should have the right to live our lives open and free and not be taunted and traumatized by the general public if they don’t approve.”
The Times-Picayune had originally misgendered McElveen based on an inaccurate press release that was issued by the New Orleans Police Department. It was also previously thought that this was the sixth transgender murder this year, however we just learned that another transgender woman, Jaquarrius Holland, was shot and killed in Monroe, Louisiana earlier in the month. Due to misgendering in the reporting, the fact that she was transgender has just come to light. 2017 is currently on pace to be the deadliest year for the transgender community.