(WB) A transgender woman named Channel was shot with a BB gun by a motorist on July 21 in Baltimore, according to police.

Ava Pipitone, executive director of The Baltimore Transgender Alliance, told the Blade that Channel, who was hospitalized after the attack, has since been released.

According to a Baltimore Police Department report, the victim told police that she was standing outside the Eagle nightclub at the intersection of Charles and 21st Streets on July 21.  At approximately 1:48 a.m., an unidentified suspect driving a blue or gray four-door vehicle with a sunroof called over to the victim claiming he needed to ask her a question.

She walked over to the driver’s side door. The victim described the suspect to police as “a black male with black hair that was ‘cruddy’ style with the top bleached and appeared to have on a white shirt.”

The suspect then asked, “Are you a girl or a boy?”  The victim replied, “What do I look like?”

He then pulled out a silver BB gun and shot the victim five times in her forehead, right eye and other parts of her body. The victim told police that when she was shot she fell to the ground and that when she realized she was still alive, ran away from the area. The suspect fled in an unknown direction.

She told police she was taken to a hospital for treatment by a friend and a witness.

The responding officer informed LGBT Liaison Sgt. Kevin Bailey of the incident.

“If you want to help, talk to people in your circles of influence. Ignorance and transphobia are killing us. And bridge this divide,” Pipitone said. “Know your neighbors. When the temperature goes up so does violence. We are not going to sit here and wait to react. Channel was shot in an area where white queers enjoy a significant amount of safety. Why?”

Detectives from the Northern District are continuing to investigate this incident. Anyone with information can call Metro Crime Stoppers at 1-866-7Lockup. Callers can always remain anonymous.


— Steve Charing, Washington Blade courtesy of the National LGBTQ Media Association.