SANTA ANA (CBSLA.com) — Santa Ana police are investigating the death of a 40-year -old transgender woman who attended a silicone injection party in December.
KNX 1070’s Mike Landa reports the woman is believed to be the latest victim in a nationwide trend of transgender women who want to look more feminine by getting injected with industrial-type silicone through cattle syringes.
Antonio Viramontes of the LGBT Center in Santa Ana said similar deaths are happening all over the country.
“It’s usually a deep perforation, it’s extremely painful, and at the end the wound is just sealed with super glue,” said Viramontes.
Women who believe they were born in the wrong body will do anything to feel complete, Viramontes added.
CBS2’s Michele Gile reports 40-year-old Katya De La Riva was injected in her rear end at the party. She had trouble breathing and checked herself into a Kaiser Permanente hospital in Irvine on Jan. 1. De La Riva died three weeks later. Her official cause of death, according to the Orange County coroner, was silicone-embolism syndrome.
Kaiser doctors contacted the coroner because of the possible criminal nature of the case, and belief that the injection was given in a non-medical setting.
In turn, the coroner notified Santa Ana police, who are now trying to get more details about the case, including where and when the party took place, and who was there.
“Who was the person that was injecting them, are they medically trained, are they a doctor, what, exactly did they inject into the decedent, those are all things that need to be figured out,” said Santa Ana police Cpl. Anthony Bertagna.
Viramontes told Gile that a wide variety of materials are used in the injections people receive at the secret, underground parties.
“It is usually with some kind of chemicals that have not been approved,” Viramontes said. “Some of the stuff that I have heard that gets used, and is very common, is industrial-grade silicone, airplane fuel, goat’s milk, dog urine.”