Transgender woman found dead at Florida apartment complex

Sasha Garden. Facebook photo.

A transgender woman was found dead in Orange County, Florida Thursday morning. Police said that there were signs of trauma on Sasha Garden’s body, but haven’t yet released a cause of death.

“She was a very outgoing person, very outspoken,” Mulan Montrese Williams, a friend of Garden’s, told Orlando TV station WESH.  "Somewhat of a firecracker.”

Police knocked on Williams’ door early Thursday. “That’s when they showed me a picture,” Williams told WESH. “The picture was very disturbing because, unfortunately, it was the picture of her deceased on the ground. I’m still dealing with that.”

The Orange County Sheriff's Office and multiple local media outlets originally misgendered Garden, saying Thursday morning that the victim was a man dressed as a woman. In addition, two used her deadname.

The media used the excuse that they were given that information by the Sheriff’s office, which said they were going by Garden’s driver’s license, which still said she was male. Eventually, after many complaints from the community, the sheriff’s department and the media revised their coverage to describe Garden as a transgender woman.

Misgendering and use of a victim’s deadname is an ongoing problem with officials and media outlets. GLAAD has asked the media to:

  • Report on the brutal violence perpetrated against transgender people, particularly transgender women of color.
  • Respect and use the lived identity, name and pronoun of the victim.

Garden was at least the fourth transgender person murdered in Florida this year. She was a transgender woman of color. She is at least the 14th transgender person murdered in the United States in 2018. In 2017, at least 28 were killed. We use the term “at least” because the misgendering and deadname problem often makes compiling statistics on these brutal crimes difficult.

For a list remembering those lost, HRC has posted a list here.

Copyright The Gayly – July 20, 2018 @ 2:20 p.m. CDT.