Dana Martin, 31, of Montgomery County, Alabama, was killed on Sunday, January 6, in a shooting, making her the first known transgender woman killed in 2019.
According to local news reports, Martin was found in her car, which had ran off the road and crashed into a ditch. She was found inside her vehicle with fatal gunshot wounds.
The Alabama news website AL.com reports that the Montgomery Police Department misgendered Martin, a common occurrence that makes it more difficult to identify transgender victims of violent crime. In a statement to AL.com, the MPD said: “Please note that MPD publicly identified the victim as male as determined by legal documents and forensic evaluation… For MPD, how a homicide victim identifies is a personal matter that becomes relevant to our investigation only if it is determined to be a reason the victim was killed.” The LGBT publication INTO spoke with contacts and friends of Martin, who confirmed that she was a transgender woman.
According to GLAAD, the misidentification of transgender victims of violence "adds further insult to injury, compounding the tragedy by invalidating who the victims were." GLAAD has created a guide explaining the importance of correct identification, Doubly Victimized: Reporting on Transgender Victims of Crime.
According to the Montgomery Adviser, the investigation into Martin's death is ongoing. At time of publishing, no arrests have been made.