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A transgender woman who was shot on the Fourth of July has died from injuries sustained in that attack. 22-year-old Deeniquia Dodds, also known as Dee Dee, was found at around 2:59 a.m. in the 200 block of Division Avenue, NE by a passerby, who alerted police to her whereabouts.
Members of the Metropolitan Police Department’s Sixth District found Dodds suffering from a gunshot wound to the neck, unconscious but breathing. Dodds was transported to Prince George’s Hospital Center and was admitted for treatment, where she stayed on life support until July 13, when she was declared dead.
Dodds is the 15th transgender woman to be killed in the United States in 2016, and the sixth transgender woman killed in the District since 2002. Local transgender activist Earline Budd, speaking on behalf of Dodd’s family in a statement, said that Dodds was “brutally shot in the neck and left to die.”
“Her murder reminds us all of how often the transgender community is targeted for violence in our society,” Budd said in the statement.
Transgender activists had initially expressed concern over MPD not releasing any information publicly on Dodds’ shooting until well after July 4, but Budd told Metro Weekly that it was done at the request of Dodds’ family, who feared that they might be targeted. So far, police have not released any information on a suspect or what led to the shooting. But the area of Northeast D.C. where Dodds was killed — where the Grant Park, Marshall Heights and Capitol View neighborhoods intersect — is within a one-mile radius of various locations where several transgender women have lost their lives, including Lashai Mclean, Stephanie Thomas, Ukea Davis, and Deoni Jones, whose death in 2012 made her the most recent victim prior to Dodds’ death.
A vigil in Dodds’ memory will be held Saturday, July 16, at 6:30 p.m. at 5355 Clay Terrace NE, where Dodds lived with her family and two blocks from where she was killed. Saturday’s vigil is also expected to serve as a protest against the ongoing violence directed against transgender women, particularly those of color. Dodds’ funeral will be held later, during the week of July 25.
HIPS, Inc., a local service agency that works with various communities, including sex workers and transgender women, issued a statement saying that Dodds was the victim of “a culture of transphobic, racist, misogynist violence.”
“It is clear that the Metropolitan Police Department’s resources would be much better used investigating and stopping violent crimes against transgender people and sex workers,” HIPS’ statement reads. “…As a city, we must hold each and every person accountable to ending violence against our city’s most vulnerable populations. The police, the Mayor, our ANC Commissioners, our neighbors, our families and we must rededicate ourselves to fighting violence instead of wasting time and resources on unnecessary policing and profiling.”
MPD said in a release that it offers a reward of up to $25,000 to anyone who provides information leading to the arrest and conviction of the persons responsible for any homicide in the District. People with information about Dodds’ shooting are asked to call police at (202) 727-9099, or may anonymously submit information to MPD’s Text Tip Line by text messaging 50411.
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