By [Mila Madison](https://www.themaven.net/transgenderuniverse/user/@MilaMadison "<span style=\\\\\\\\\\"font-size:13pt;font-family:Georgia;color:#000000;background-color:#ffffff;font-weight:400;font-style:normal;font-variant:normal;text-decoration:underline;-webkit-text-decoration-skip:none;text-decoration-skip-ink:none;vertical")
Police found Vontashia Bell lying in the street near the corner of Harrison Street and Linwood Avenue in Cedar Grove after responding to reports of gunshots being heard in the area. When the found Bell she had suffered gunshots to her chest and wrist. She was rushed to University Health Hospital in Shreveport, but died from her injuries.
Vontashia Bell is the 4th transgender person to murdered in Louisiana this year.
Bell has been misgendered in local reports, and at this time, both the police and local media state that they will not issue a correction at the request of her family. Her family has said they were concerned that not all of her family members knew she was transgender.
Local advocates are concerned that by not correctly reporting Bell’s chosen name and gender identity, the police and local media are hindering the investigator's ability to obtain vital information related to the incident, particularly from those who have only known her as Vontashia.
“I am extremely upset that another member of our transgender community has been murdered," said Rebecca Norris, President of the Shreveport chapter of Louisiana Trans Advocates. “And yet again not only did the police misgender her, but they are also hampering the investigation by not using her chosen name and gender." Norris also expressed her concerns over the amount of murders in Louisiana over the last 2 years. "This is the sixth murder of a transgender person in our local community within the last two tears, the fourth this year," Norris said. "We need to get to the root of why this is happening."
There are currently no suspects in the case.
Investigators are asking anyone with information to contact Shreveport Police Investigators at 318-673-6955. Those wishing to remain anonymous should call 318-673-7373, lockemup.org, or via their app P3Tips. Crime Stoppers is offering up to a $1,000.00 reward for information leading to the arrest of the individual(s) responsible for this crime.
Bell is now the 18th transgender person to be murdered in the United States in 2018.
Rest in power Vontashia Bell!