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Dallas police investigate "similarities" in crimes against 3 transgender women

Possible link between attacks on trans women

Police are investigating whether the killing of a Dallas transgender woman could be linked to another Dallas murder and an assault in which the victims were also transgender women. Dallas Police Major Vincent Weddington said the shooting death of Muhlaysia Booker over the weekend, the shooting death of a transgender woman in a car in October 2018 and a stabbing attack on a transgender woman last month all have "similarities," but said investigators haven't determined definitive links between them.  

Booker was found shot to death on an east Dallas street Saturday. Last month, video showing 23-year-old Booker being brutally beaten by assailants using homophobic slurs went viral and prompted national outrage. Police have said there's no apparent link between the April 12 assault and her murder. 

Booker's slaying along with the two other crimes Dallas police described Tuesday remain unsolved. In two of the cases, Weddington said, the victims were near the same intersection in East Dallas prior to the crime. Two of the victims got into a car with someone, and the third allowed someone into their car, Weddington said.

In the attack last month, the victim was stabbed multiple times and left for dead, but survived, Weddington said. Police are working with the victim to determine a description of the attacker.

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Muhlaysia Booker

Weddington said police are working with federal authorities to determine whether the murders and the stabbing attack were hate-motivated. He said another transgender woman was found dead in a field in July 2017, but her cause of death has not been determined.

Booker was the fifth transgender person killed in the U.S. in 2019, according to the Human Rights Campaign. Advocacy groups say attacks on transgender people in the U.S. are on the rise, "CBS This Morning" reported. Last year, the Human Rights Campaign tracked at least 26 deaths due to fatal violence. The majority of victims were black transgender women.