Second Black Transgender Woman Murdered in South Carolina in Two Weeks

The transgender community is mourning the loss of another member after a Black trans woman was killed in South Carolina.

Pebbles LaDime “Dime” Doe, 24, was murdered in Allendale County, South Carolina on August 4. Doe’s murder comes just two weeks after Denali Berries Stuckey, also a Black transgender woman, was fatally shot in North Charleston on July 20.

Initial reports misgendered and misnamed Doe, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) said. The LGBTQ civil rights organization said that Doe is the 14th Black transgender woman to be killed in the United States in 2019.

South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED) spokeswoman Kathryn Richardson told The State a passerby discovered Doe’s body in a vehicle on August 4. Doe was slumped over her steering wheel after being shot.

SLED is assisting with the murder investigation conducted by the Allendale County Sheriff’s Office. However, little information has been released regarding Doe’s death. Information requests to the Allendale County Coroner’s Office about Doe’s cause of death were denied. Meanwhile, the Allendale County Sheriff’s Office refused to release an incident report concerning the murder.

The Alliance For Full Acceptance (AFFA), a social justice organization for the LGBTQ community in South Carolina, said there is no sense of peace or security in the transgender community.

“I’m devastated by the news of Dime Doe’s murder in Allendale County,” said AFFA Executive Director Chase Glenn in a statement. “While our community is still reeling from the murder of one of our transgender sisters in North Charleston just two weeks ago, we now learn that a second Black trans woman has been murdered not even one hundred miles away.”

“We are sounding the alarm — We are in an absolute state of emergency for Black transgender women.”

Glenn noted trans women of color experience “epidemic levels of violence” and must navigate anti-LGBTQ prejudice, racism, and misogyny.

South Carolina Equality (SCEQ) said in a statement that Doe’s mother asked the organization to call attention to her murder in the hope that someone might offer information about the case to investigators.

“We are angry, heartbroken, and exhausted by the news of another life taken from our community. Violence against Black trans women is a crisis, and has been for a long time — and nothing seems to change,” SCEQ said.

The HRC said that it was “deeply saddened” to learn of Doe’s death. The organization echoed the statements released by AFFA and SCEQ in highlighting the violence experienced by transgender people of color, particularly Black transgender women.

“It is clear that fatal violence disproportionately affects transgender women of color, and that the intersections of racism, transphobia, sexism, biphobia, and homophobia conspire to deprive them of necessities to live and thrive,” the HRC said in a statement. “This epidemic of violence that disproportionately targets transgender people of color — particularly Black transgender women — must cease.”

SCEQ, AFFA, and the HRC joined forces in calling for justice for Dime and for all of the Black trans women killed in South Carolina since 2018. The state is one of five US states that does not have any hate crime laws protecting transgender citizens. Four Black transgender women have been killed in South Carolina since 2018: Sasha Wall, Regina Denise Brown, Denali Berries Stuckey, and LaDime Doe.

Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) addressed Doe’s death on twitter on August 8. “My heart aches for Pebbles LaDime Doe, Kiki Fantroy, and their loved ones. The murder of Black trans women is a crisis that we must call out — and address head-on,” the Democratic presidential candidate tweeted.

Warren was referring to Kiki Fantroy, a 21-year-old Black trans woman who was shot and killed in Miami on July 31. Miami-Dade Police said a 17-year-old male teenager was arrested after allegedly admitting to shooting Fantroy to death near Southwest 222nd Street and 115th Court, NBC Miami reported.

Authorities said that Fantroy was with a group of people and was returning home from a party when the teen reportedly propositioned her for sex. Fantroy rejected the teen’s offer before she was shot and killed.

At least 26 transgender people were killed in 2018, according to the HRC reported. The US Transgender Survey (USTS) found in 2015 that nearly one in 10 respondents reported being physically assaulted for being transgender. The report revealed 42 percent of respondents said they experienced some form of intimate partner violence that included physical abuse or threats throughout their lifetime.

About the Author

Nicole Rojas is a breaking news writer for The North Star. She has published in various venues, including Newsweek, GlobalPost, IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly, and the Long Island Post. Nicole graduated from Boston University in 2012 with a degree in print journalism. She is an avid world traveler who recently explored Asia and Australia.