TONIGHT AT 6PM! EMERGENCY RALLY IN RESPONSE TO POLICE VIOLENCE

ETA: We now know the officer’s name: Kenneth Furr. He has been charged with DWI and assault with a deadly weapon. We have also learned that he was previously removed from the force and then re-instated, and that he was not authorized to carry a weapon. We still don’t know what caused the altercation or what Officer Furr’s motives were. Regardless, it is inexcusable for a police officer to open fire on individuals for any reason. This is another typical example of the violence that trans women face, and we demand justice!

Today, we were notified by the Metropolitan Police Department of a shooting involving transgender individuals in the area of First and Pierce Streets NW around 5:30 AM this morning. We are still attempting to gather information, but preliminary accounts indicate two vehicles collided at the site, one driven by an off-duty MPD officer, and the other containing five people, three of whom are trans.  The off-duty officer jumped on top of the car and fired a weapon inside, hitting at least three people inside. Community activists have visited the two trans women in the hospital, where they were treated for non-life threatening injuries. One other person was also wounded. We have learned that the shooter and at least one victim may have known each other previously, and had an altercation at a nearby store before the shooting, but we do not yet know the nature of their relationship.

We are gathering at 6PM at the site of the incident to demand accountability and transparency from MPD on the clear trend of violence against trans and queer communities coming from its officers. This incident is just another in a long line of systemic violence that trans women, and particularly trans women of color, face on a daily basis. Many members of our community have noted that this summer has been particularly violent. MPD reports at least eight violent crimes against trans people this year, but service organizations have collected information about many more. This is also the second violent attack involving an off-duty MPD officer in the past ten months. Tonight we hope to draw attention to the police department’s complicity in the ongoing violence that our communities must confront. Please spread the word and join us at First and Pierce NW. This violence must not go unacknowledged.

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