Metro Weekly

Transgender woman dies from gunshot wounds following shootout in Southeast D.C.

Police believe the woman was shot during an exchange of gunfire with security guards

Crime scene tape – Photo: Fer Gregory

A transgender woman has died after suffering from gunshot wounds following a shootout with security guards near a vacant building in Southeast D.C.

According to a news release from the Metropolitan Police Department, armed private security guards, employed by Metropolitan Tactical Elite Protective Services, were trying to secure a vacant building in the 4200 block of Barnaby Road SE around 10:43 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 29.

While in the building, the security guards encountered what they described as an armed adult. That person and the security guards exchanged fire, at which point the shooter fled the scene.

MPD responded to the scene to conduct a search for the suspect, but were unable to locate the person.

However, MPD officers were later called to the same address around 4:51 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 30, responding to a report of an unconscious person. Police found the person, later identified as a transgender woman, suffering from gunshot wounds.

DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services responded, but determined that she showed no signs consistent with life.

The woman’s identity is being withheld until her next of kin are notified. A handgun was recovered at the scene. 

MPD Chief Peter Newsham said in a news conference that police believe the transgender woman was the person who exchanged gunfire with the security guards.

But local transgender activist Earline Budd told NBC4 Washington she doesn’t understand why security officers and MPD were unable to find the woman during the initial search just after the shooting.

“I just hope at the end of the day, the situation with the young lady that was found dead last night, that they get to the bottom of it,” Budd said. 

An MPD spokesperson confirmed to Metro Weekly that the incident remains under investigation.

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

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