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New York City police investigate a trans woman’s death as a hate crime

New York City police investigate a trans woman’s death as a hate crime

The death of a New York City transgendered woman is being investigated as a possible hate crime.

Today (22 August) Islan Nettles died after being on a ventilator for less than a week. Last week, 17 August, the 21-year-old was walking with a transgendered  female friend in Harlem, the traditional African-American neighborhood in the city.

According to the local news station NY1, the pair walked by a group of boys. When the group realized Nettles and her friend were transgendered, an argument erupted.

A suspect allegedly said anti-gay remarks, and punches were thrown. The attack happened across from a police precinct.

Nettles, who also went by Vaughn Nettles and Alon Nettles, was on a ventilator since 17 August.

A suspect is in custody, but authorities are not releasing his name until the charges have been upgraded.

The death of Nettles is another crime in a summer of anti-gay violence in New York City.

In mid-May Mark Carson was gunned down a few blocks from the Stonewall Inn, the birthplace of the modern gay equality moment.

In mid-June, a 19-year-old was raped in a park bathroom stall. At the end of June’s Gay Pride, two men threatened a group of gay teenagers with sexual violence.

Last week two gay men were punched, and kicked, in the historically gay neighborhood Chelsea.

‘Reports of hate violence increased 4% for LGBTQ and HIV affected New Yorkers in 2012, continuing a three year trend in increased violence locally,’ the Anti-Violence Project said in a press release about the Chelsea attack.

The AVP offers support to LGBT crime victims.