A trans woman was stabbed in the head in a laundrette in what police suspect may have been a hate crime.
Disturbing video footage captured the moment three assailants – a man and two women – cornered the victim before pouncing on her, punching and kicking her and throwing her against a washing machine.
At one point between punches, someone stabs the victim in the head causing her to bleed and flee to a nearby bin. One of the attackers then walks to collect her bags of laundry.
The video, which does not have any audio, ends with the victim cradling her head as she tries to stop the bleeding.
The attack took place at the Capital Laundry Mat in Washington DC’s Kingman Park neighbourhood on Sunday (6 June).
According to FOX 15 DC, police arrived at the scene to find the trans woman bleeding profusely. She claimed that the three attackers lobbed anti-LGBT+ slurs at her during the brawl.
Now Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia investigators are looking into whether the incident was fuelled by transphobia.
Law enforcement data shows there were at least 87 hate crimes against LGBT+ people in 2019 in Washington DC – that figure dropped off to 65 the following year.
But across the nation in the last few years, violence against trans folk has rocketed to rates so alarming that the American Medical Association has dubbed it an “epidemic of violence“.
In 2020, at least 44 trans, non-binary and gender non-conforming people were murdered, according to Human Rights Campaign.
HRC predicts that 2021’s final death toll will surpass that of 2020, which was already the highest on record.
At the time of writing, at least 28 trans folks have been murdered in the US this year.
“These victims, like all of us, are loving partners, parents, family members, friends and community members,” HRC wrote in a statement.
“They worked, went to school and attended houses of worship. They were real people — people who did not deserve to have their lives taken from them.”
Watch: Trans women of color create a network of support
In less than six months the community has mourned: Tyianna Alexandra, Samuel Edmund Damián Valentín, Bianca Bankz, Dominique Jackson, Fifty Bandz, Alexus Braxton, Chyna Carrillo, Jeffrey ‘JJ’ Bright, Jasmine Cannady, Jenna Franks, Diamond ‘Kyree’ Sanders, Rayanna Pardo, Dominique Lucious, Jaida Peterson, Remy Fennell, Tiara Banks, Natalia Smüt, Iris Santos, Tiffany Thomas, Jahaira DeAlto Balenciaga, Keri Washington, Sophie Vásquez, Danny Henson, Whispering Bear Spirit, Serenity Hollis, Oliver ‘Ollie’ Taylor, Thomas Hardin and Poe Black.