12-Year-Old Boy Arrested After Allegedly Shooting at Trans Woman

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A 12-year-old boy was arrested in Orlando, Fla. Thursday after allegedly shooting at a transgender woman, who was not hit, according to local news station News 13.

Shandebine Sherrington, 26, said the boy used gay slurs before shooting at her seven times.

"I was walking along Church Street, going towards a friend's house, when I was approached by a 12-year-old saying he was going to kill me," Sherrington told the news station. "I don't know who this individual was and he started shooting at me, chasing me multiple places to shoot at me."

The incident occurred just before midnight and Sherrington added there were "witnesses that were out there and saw this young man shooting and chasing me down the street."

Sherrington said she ran away from the boy, who was identified as Joseph Smith by Orlando's ABC-Affiliate station WFTV, but once she realized he ran out of bullets she said she decided to turn around and chase him.

"I was going to beat him if I would've caught him," she told WFTV.

She told News 13 she was on the phone with police as she went after Smith. The authorities arrived within minutes and found shell casings on the ground and the gun in a nearby field. Police said the weapon was listed as stolen.

Smith was arrested and charged with attempted murder and grand theft of a firearm.

News 13 spoke with Smith's grandmother whose house he sneaked out of Thursday night, adding that Smith has been on medication since 2009 and was on probation for trying to steal a pellet gun this summer.

Though Sherrington was not hurt, she said it wasn't the first time someone has tried to shoot her. In January 2014, she claimed someone opened fire and hit her in the leg several times, according to WFTV. No one was arrested in that incident but Sherrington said she believes it was also a hate crime.


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