Officials in Los Angles are calling out the “callous” people who watched three transwomen be attacked, beaten, and robbed by a group of men.
At 2 a.m. on Monday, three women, #JoslynAllen, #JasleneBusanet, and #EdenEstrada, were harassed, attacked, and robbed by three men on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles. “He literally grabs my hand and pulls me,” Allen explained to KABC. “He’s like ‘We’re going to find your friends because I’m going to beat y’all up.’”
While Allen was able to get away from the men, the suspects soon found Allen’s friends and began harassing them by yelling transphobic slurs at them. They also hit Busanet over the head with a bottle, knocking her to ground, police report. Instead of helping the women or de-escalate the situation, bystanders joined in with verbal attacks against the women and even recorded the entire attack. Police also drove past while the attack was happening and never stopped to look into the matter.
Despite the previous negligence, the Los Angeles Police Department announced on Thursday that they found the man responsible for the attacks. Authorities arrested 29-year-old #CarltonCallway on robbery and assault charges and called Callway’s actions a hate crime. During a news conference on Thursday, police said Callway gloated about the attack on the women on social media. One of the other men involved, #WillieWalker, has been charged with extortion. #DavionWilliams is still on the loose, but he is wanted for assault.
Deputy Chief Justin Eisenberg called those who stood by and watched “callous.” Los Angeles City Councilman Mitch O’Farrell said he was shocked and angered by the video, The Washington Post reports. “When I saw the video, like anyone who has seen it who believes in human decency, to see this level of violence celebrated gleefully, so much so that the perpetrator himself posted on social media, is like a sucker punch to all of us who believe in civilized behavior,” O’Farrell said.
In just this year, there have been “at least 26 transgender or gender-nonconforming people fatally shot or killed,” according to the Human Rights Campaign. There were 27 deaths in 2019. Police chief Michel Moore said in a Twitter video that she promises to support the transgender community. “These types of instances of hate and violence have no place in Los Angeles,” Moore said. “The Los Angeles Police Department stands fully in support of your rights, your dignity, and respect each of you as individuals. And we will not allow this to occur here, and we will do everything within our power to ensure that it does not.”
Since the attack, a GoFundMe has been started for the women’s legal fees, and it has now raised more than $16,000. Protestors also took to Hollywood on Thursday in support of the women and calling out the violence that is projected onto the Trans community. “I don’t even have words for this. I am so touched that many people care about what happened to us, and what happens to trans women everywhere. Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart. I can’t even explain how much this means to me,” said Allen in an Instagram post about the march.