Metro Weekly

Suspect in Chinatown Transgender Assault Arraigned

Robinson pleads not guilty to charge with bias enhancement, as defense demands jury trial

A man accused of assaulting a transgender woman in Chinatown in August was arraigned in D.C. Superior Court today, Sept. 28, on a charge of bias-related simple assault.

Ahmad Robinson, of Silver Spring, pleaded not guilty to the charge against him. His lawyer, Joseph Bernard, demanded a jury trial for his client. Presiding Judge Juliet McKenna agreed, but noted she was transferring the case to Judge Herbert Dixon Jr.

Robinson has since been scheduled to appear in Superior Court before Dixon for an Oct. 9 status hearing.

Robinson, 29, is accused of attacking a transgender woman Aug. 10 because he was unsure of her gender identity. According to charging documents, officers from the Metropolitan Police Department responded to a police radio alert of an assault in progress in the 1000 block of 4th Street NW, located in the District’s Chinatown neighborhood, at approximately 12:45 a.m.

Upon arriving on the scene, officers found the victim at the corner of 5th and K Streets NW. The victim told officers that Robinson hit her in the face with a closed fist.

According to charging documents, Robinson asked the woman, ”Are you a bitch or nigga?” to which she replied, ”What the fuck does it look like?” Robinson then allegedly said, ”Motherfucka, you got a dick … take that shit to Sursum Corda,” referring to the Sursum Corda neighborhood, an area close to several housing projects managed by the District of Columbia Housing Authority.

Robinson then allegedly knocked a beer out of the woman’s hand before striking her. The woman told police she pursued her attacker down L Street NW and into a nearby Safeway grocery store, but lost sight of her attacker. About an hour later, at the scene, the victim spotted Robinson and positively identified him to police as her attacker, whereupon officers arrested him.

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John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at

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