EAST HOLLYWOOD (CBSLA.com) — Newly obtained security camera footage is providing detectives with new leads into the killing of a transgender woman in East Hollywood.
The footage, obtained from an auto body shop, shows the three suspects, whom police described as three Latino men in their 20s, walking on Melrose near Kenmore avenues around 3 a.m. Thursday.
Moments later, the victim is seen heading in the same direction. She was described as a transgender woman in her mid-40s.
The suspects are then seen confronting the woman before allegedly taking her purse. As the woman runs across the street, she is shot in the head, according to KCAL9’s Peter Daut.
The victim, clearly wounded, stumbles across the street and collapses on the sidewalk. Minutes later and after the suspects took off, a bystander stops to help, but it’s too late.
“I mean it was just so clear that she was just trying to get away,” said Christopher Argyros, who manages the Anti-Violence Project of Los Angeles’ LGBT Center, and watched the video.
While police believe the incident was a botched robbery, Argyros insists the woman’s gender clearly was a factor.
“The violence gets escalated if the attackers realize the victim is transgender,” he said.
A small memorial condemning violence and violence towards transgender people now marks the crime scene.
And though they never knew the victim, many who paid their respects are heartbroken.
“The victim, she was someone’s daughter, she was someone’s friend, she might have been somebody’s partner, she was probably somebody’s confidante,” Argyros said.
Meanwhile, police are asking anyone with more information to come forward.