UPDATED: Trans Woman of Color Lamia Beard Murdered in Norfolk

Lamia Beard
Lamia Beard Source: Facebook

Lamia Beard was just 30 years old.

Her body was found Saturday morning, January 17. Her life and death were shown further disregard by police & media misgendering as well as victim blaming. From The Virginian Pilot:

According to a news release, Beard was found shortly before 4 a.m. in the 700 block of E. 25th St. suffering from a gunshot wound. [She] was taken to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, where [she] died.

Another individual was shot 2 and 1/2 hours later on a nearby street, but did not have life threatening injuries. Police are trying to determine if the two incidents are related.

Final arrangements for Lamia (under her old name) are available here.

The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs’ (NCAVP) most recent report, Hate Violence Against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer and HIV-Affected Communities in the United States in 2013, documented 18 anti-LGBTQ homicides in 2013. Of those homicide victims, almost 90% were people of color. Almost three-quarters (72%) of homicide victims were transgender women, and more than two-thirds (67%) were transgender women of color.

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NCAVP responded to the deaths of twelve transgender women of color in 2014.

Lamia deserves better. Her memory deserves to be honored and cherished, not twisted to meet the expectations and needs of other people – even those who mourn her. So rather than rant again, I’m going to share a post from Lamia’s Facebook page that she made public.

Lamia Beard Quote


Anyone with information about either shooting is asked to contact the Norfolk Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP (I have to add that that’s the worst name for a tip line I’ve ever encountered.)

Rest in peace, Rest in power, Lamia. I hope with all my heart that your journey was amazing no matter how short.

UPDATE – Lamia’s family is working with the Virginia Anti-Violence Project. They are asking for community support to help pay for Lamia’s funeral expenses – they are trying to raise $2,000. If you are able to contribute, here is the link. VAVP has also worked with GLAAD and NCAVP to address inaccurate media coverage.


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  • Thank you for treating Lamia’s murder with dignity and respect. It’s hard to believe that “journalists” go to college for this shit and can’t even get the pronouns correct 🙁

    • Thanks for commenting. I’m so very sorry about the ongoing disregard in media coverage. I’m glad this particular reporter is being called on the carpet.

  • ‘ journalists ‘ not only go to college, they are also paid to write this crap that never resembles what the real facts are in any story, ever !

  • This is an article that is very dear to my heart, because Lamia is my oldest sister, and it hurts the way that the media disreguarded this tragic event. Thank You for the Love!! <3

    • Hey Greg Martinez.. a little off topic but I couldn’t help to notice the last name beard
      I had family in virgina. Do you know of they have family in nj

  • This is happening across the country. What is Law enforcement doing about it? We need more protection from people that are noneducated about the Transgender people. Transgender should be able to live their life like they please. How much knowledge does this nation have? Where is the education on The TransFolk??? In the education system, workplace environment. In towns as well and not just in Cities.

  • Sue,

    Many thanks to you for bringing this into the light of day. I live in Norfolk, so the cold, heartless manner the Pilot “reported” this is disturbing and heart breaking. The writer went to some length to minimize her death by presenting it as “just a dead cross dressing prostitute”, and a number of us have stepped up to let Mr. Daughtry know that this callous attempt to dehumanize her is not acceptable.

    WTKR reported the shooting in a more appropriate manner, which has also been pointed out. I only hope that the backlash is loud enough to start making even just a few “journalists” remember that transgendered members of society are people too, and deserve to be treated as such.

  • Her family wrote the obituary and submitted to the funeral home. Evidently the family wanted it this way. In Virginia, if you are born a male and still have male organs, you must be buried like a male.

  • I’m sorry, but part of the Problem is people think it’s a Choice to be lgbt(etc.) and it’s Not.
    R.I.p. brave soul

  • In my community we say Presente when a comrade passes to the other side because their presence will always be felt. Presente Lamia!

  • My sincerest condolences to the family.

    If I may add, I’m not sure the problem lies in the public school system, but rather in our culture, a culture that tells people they can do whatever the hell they want simply because they want it. This includes killing people who are different than they are, inconvenient (in the eyes of the killer). It seems to me that it is our culture that we need to change. Change the songs we sing, the books we write, and the motion pictures we produce to show less exploitation, revenge, and death and more examples of joyful co-existence. Change the laws we write so that any disregard of human dignity is strictly forbidden. We need a culture that recognizes that “tolerance is for people, but never for principles” (Archbishop Fulton Sheen). I have to admit, the clerics have us on that one.

    Rest in Peace Lamia

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