World

Transgender Woman Brutally Murdered In Brazil

| by Michael Doherty

A transgender woman in Fortaleza, Brazil, was dragged from her home by a group of men who then beat her to death with kicks and a plank of wood.

In a disturbing video of the Feb. 15 attack, Dandara dos Santos, 42, is seen crying on the ground as she is kicked and tortured, before being thrown into a wheelbarrow and beaten to death, the Mirror reports. Dandara is reportedly one at least 20 known transgender people who have been murdered in Brazil in 2017.

Dandara begged the men to spare her life, but the attackers lifted her bloody body into a wheelbarrow, where they wheeled her into a back alley and beat her to death, as others cheered and laughed in the background, Daily Mail reports.

The person holding the camera in the video is heard laughing and saying that the group will "kill the f******."

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The video, which emerged online in an attempt to find the killers, has caused outrage among LGBT groups worldwide.

"Six people have been identified and the video has helped with that," said Damasceno, a police inspector working on the case. "The footage was first circulated among LGBT groups which helped that process. The police began circulating the clip and we arrived at the house of two of the people identified but they fled."

"The investigation is already well advanced and we are going after the killers," The inspector added.

The Ceara state government issued a statement condemning the attack, which was reportedly the fifth deadly attack on a transgender person in Brazil in February, and said the killers will be punished.

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"The Government of Ceara hereby expresses its deepest condemnation of acts of violence and intolerance as what was practiced against Dandara dos Santos, killed by brutal beating," said the state government's statement.

"This government believes in and supports, through a human rights framework linked to the Office of the Governor and current public policies that pluralism, diversity and tolerance are fundamental values for democracy," it continued, before affirming that the government would work to protect LGBT people in Ceara.

Of transgender people killed in Brazil in 2017, Planet Transgender notes some are as young as 17 years old.

Transgender people face a high rate of violence and victimization around the world. In 2013, more than two thirds of hate crime homicide victims were transgender women, according to the Anti-Violence Project.

Transgender women are also reportedly nearly twice as likely to face sexual assault as the rest of the population, in addition to facing higher rates of poverty, unemployment and homelessness that make them more vulnerable to violence and hate crimes.

Sources: Mirror, Daily Mail, Planet Transgender, Anti-Violence Project / Photo credit: Mirror

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