The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office has decided not to file charges in the Aug. 17 robbery and assault of three transgender women on Hollywood Boulevard. Instead, the office released two of the perpetrators and sent the case back to the LAPD for further investigation. In response to that decision, the Los Angeles LGBT Center’s Director of Policy and Community Building Terra Russell-Slavin issued the following statement:
“The Center demands greater transparency and accountability in the recent decision by the Los Angeles County’s District Attorney office to release the perpetrators of a violent attack against three transgender women on Hollywood Boulevard last week.
“The District Attorney must be held accountable to provide the basis on which this decision was made in light of the victims’ accounts and bystander videos of the incident. We call on the office to provide a fully articulated rationale for choosing to release the assailants, and to explain why they have failed to bring charges—including hate-crime charges—against them. Furthermore, we ask them to explain what steps will be taken to ensure that these women receive justice.
“At a time when transgender women of color, and especially black transgender women, are being violently assaulted and, in many instances murdered, at vastly disproportionate rates, this decision cannot stand without further explanation. We demand a full accounting for the process and we will continue to raise our voices of protest until our questions are answered.”
If you have experienced hate violence and are in need of assistance, please reach out to the Center’s Anti-Violence Project at 323-993-7673.