Her name was Chynaa Carrillo. She was a 24-year-old Latina trans woman. On Thursday, February 18, she was murdered by a man who was so intent on beating her to death that he refused police commands to stop and ended being killed himself. Her family told the media that Chynaa had recently started dating him.
My wife and I watched the original reporting yesterday, both sad to learn the woman involved had died. It was only today that we discovered she was part of our LGBTQIA community.
Two people died, and one of the victims was shot and killed by police, following an incident in New Wilmington, Lawrence County, on Thursday, Pennsylvania State Police confirmed. State police said New Wilmington police officers responded to a home along South New Castle Street where they found a suspect beating a woman with a blunt instrument. Police said when officers told the suspect to stop the attack, the suspect refused. Officers then opened fire, killing the suspect. Police said the victim, a transgender woman, died from her injuries at the hospital.Two p
Born and raised in Springdale, Arkansas, Chynaa relocated to New Wilmington for what her family said was “a fresh start.” According to WTAE, Chynaa, a certified nursing assistant, came to Pennsylvania in April to work with a regional residential living facility. The Grove is owned by Comprehensive Healthcare Management, the same company that owns Brighton Rehab and Wellness Center, a nursing home that was hit hard by COVID-19 last year in nearby Beaver County.
These are rural parts of Southwestern Pennsylvania. New Wilmington is in Lawrence County, about 60 miles from Pittsburgh and about 18 miles from Youngstown, Ohio. These communities have no statewide discrimination protections based on gender identity or sexual orienation, nor any statewide hate crimes protections.
For some context, I urge you to read these #AMPLIFY Q&A’s from folks with ties to Lawrence and nearby communities. There are not many trans and queer organizations in these regions (there are a few) and a lot of MAGA hats.
You came to our community to help our neighbors and for that I thank you. Our trans and queer community will honor your spirit and say your name.
Chynaa described herself as “Proud PreOp TransLatina!” and “outspoken, unapologetic.” Her social media is filled with thoughtful quotes and reminders that she loves her family and friends. She would have turned 25 on March 3, 2021. She deserved to reach 25.
She is the seventh trans or gender nonconforming person reported killed in 2021. She’s the second trans latinx person murdered this year. In total, there have been SEVEN murders or suspicious deaths in the first 49 days of 2021, an average of one death every seven days. So far. That we know of.
It seems based on mainstream media reporting that Chynaa was embraced in her authentic identify by her family of origin, but I have not yet learned of final arrangements. We know her murderer is dead, but his name has not yet been released.
Media has been butchering her name, but not because they are deadnaming her – they are conflating her birth surname with her chosen surname while pretty consistently using Chynaa. But they spell it differently in each report. I am using the information Chynaa shared on her own social media account for my spelling.
Sadly, the mainstream media has dug into Chynaa’s personal previous history with law enforcement and, of course, quickly decried the possibility of this being a hate crime. Why do we live in a society where a man beating a woman to death even when cops are threatening to shoot him is not a hate crime? How is that not hate? I always wonder what magical ball the police who answer these questions with such definitive certainty have to know the answer before the investigation has begun, much less concluded?
Rest in power, Chynaa. You came to our community to help our neighbors and for that I thank you. Our trans and queer community will honor your spirit and say your name. You deserved to be valued by people you dated, to complete your service, and move on to the next stages in your life – to grow and flourish and thrive.
May your memory be a revolution.
This is our list of transgender, gender-nonconforming, and non-binary neighbors lost to violence in 2021. Please do not copy or share this list without attribution.
- Tyianna Davarea Alexandra – Chicago, Illinois. January 6, 2021. Age 28.
- Samuel Edmund Damián Valentín – Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico. January 9, 2021. Age 21.
- Dominique Jackson – Jackson, Mississippi. January 25, 2021. Age 30.
- Bianca ‘Muffin’ Bankz – Atlanta, Georgia. January 21, 2021. Age 31.
- Fifty Bandzzz – Baton Rouge, Louisiana. January 28, 2021. Age 21.
- Alexus “Kimmy” Braxton – Miami, Florida. February 4, 2021. Age 45.
- Chynaa Carrillo – New Wilmington, Pennsylvania. February 18, 2021. Age 24.
We are also still monitoring these supicious deaths from 20/21 (in addition to the 44 documented killings.)
- Fendi Mon’ezah Armstrong – Lithonia, Georgia, November 11, 2020. Age 39
- Kimberely Patricia Cope – Athens, Georgia, December 27, 2020. Age 40.
- Natasha Keianna – Detroit, Michigan, January 12, 2021. Age 37.
- Bonaire ‘Bonnie’ Black – Atlanta, Georgia, December 31, 2020. Age 19.