Jenny De Leon, a 25-year-old transgender woman from the Tampa area, was killed Nov. 2 and the police and the community are asking for help identifying her killer.
This would make her the 46th known trans or gender non-conforming person killed in the country this year, surpassing last year’s numbers.
“Jenny was an enigmatic, bright soul with enough energy to fill any room,” PFLAG Tampa wrote in a tribute to her on Facebook Wednesday.
They shared that De Leon had attended chapter meetings and was able to find a home by connecting with two members. PFLAG also pointed out that news of her death came weeks before the Transgender Day of Remembrance on Nov. 20, a day the community pays tribute to trans lives lost. The organization said it would pay tribute to De Leon during its annual vigil.
Her family has created a fundraiser on Facebook to help pay for funeral costs.
“This is a national epidemic — and Black and Latinx trans women continue to be disproportionately impacted by these fatal acts of violence,” Equality Florida shared in a statement. “Our hearts are with Jenny’s family, friends, and the community that loved and knew her.”
The Tampa Police Department did not have a police report to share on the case with SFGN, as it is an open homicide investigation. According to Fox 13, De Leon’s body was found outside of a home in Sulphur Springs, a neighborhood in Tampa, around 6 a.m. on Nov. 2.
The Human Rights Campaign keeps track of the deaths of trans and gender non-conforming people killed; De Leon’s name has not been added yet, but Equality Florida notified the national advocacy organization of the news. This year in Florida, Alexus Braxton was killed in a “violent and vicious attack” Feb. 4 in Miami, Keri Washington was killed May 1 in Clearwater, and Royal Poetical Starz was shot and killed in Miami Gardens on Oct. 2. All were trans women of color.
If you have any information or tips on De Leon’s case, contact Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay, Inc. at 800-873-TIPS.