His name was Ace Scott. In April, his body was discovered in an abandoned lot near residences north of W. 9th Street and Central Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas.
That was April 15 and I am just learning about Ace Scott today, thanks in part to the diligent documentation of the Trans Day of Remembrance projects. To my knowledge, there is no further information into how a 15-year-old Black trans male teen died in a parking lot. There’s been no disclosure of toxicology results, statements from witnesses, no reference to self-harm, just nothing. A Black trans child in care of the state was found dead and no one knows why.
According to public records and statements, Ace had been in the custody of child protective services since 2017 when he was about 10 years old. The goal for Ace was adoption so it is a fair assumption that parental rights had been terminated. There is no clarify on Ace’s transition or what if any impact that had on his placement into state care.
Ace had a history of leaving placement or “experienced placement instability”. He had most recently left a placement, was located on April 11 and placed in the offices of Cornerstones of Care when he fled again. He was found dead on April 15.
The obituary for Ace uses his assigned name and a mixture of pronouns. The child protective services documents identify Ace as a transgender male.
According to his obituary, “Ace enjoyed music, painting, crafts, dancing, eating sushi, and making others laugh. Ace enjoyed museums, time outdoors, playing the guitar or piano, and making bracelets. Ace cared greatly for their sister, their best friends, and their pet rat Moon.”
I worked in a foster care program for nearly five years as a foster parent recruiter. I can think of only one time when a child ran away and they were located quickly. Everyone literally affiliated with the program was called to help. I drove several other children to their medical appointments that day so the experienced case managers and others who knew the child could focus on locating the child. That’s how it should work. We dropped all non-essential tasks to find the missing child. We didn’t lose them. And we didn’t leave them in placements that were not affirming of their identity.
As a LGBTQ activist, I know it doesn’t always work that way. Children are lost, children are missing and LGBTQ children are overrepresented among them. There are LGBTQ teens from foster care on the streets of Pittsburgh today because we have failed to create enough safety nets to keep them housed, warm, and well-fed.
But Ace Scott also died on the streets and by November, there should be some answers. And there even more definitively should be adults demanding answers and advocating for Ace Scott.
Ace is the 34th transgender person reported as a victim of fatal violence in 2022. He is the 28th person of color from these neighbors respectively. He is the 21st Black trans person from these neighbors respectively His death means a trans neighbor has been murdered every 8.3 days in 2022 in the United States. To date the victims include 20 Black trans women, 3 Latinx trans women, 2 AAIPI trans women, 1 Native/Indigenous person, 2 white trans women, 2 Black trans man and 3 white trans men.
The youngest was 17, The youngest was 15, the oldest was 50. Twelve were 25 or younger. Their deaths come on the heels of 2021, the most violent year in recorded history with the deaths of 57 trans, non-binary, and gender nonconforming people in the United States alone.
Rest in power, Ace. You deserved far more than you received in your 15 years on this earth. It was our obligation to keep you safe and support you as you grew into the adult you were meant to be, to give you unlimited resources, to make sure you had a safe place to run toward instead of just places to run from. And you deserve for the truth about your death to be acknowledged.
May your memory be a revolution.
This is our list of transgender, nonbinary, and gender nonconforming neighbors who have been victims of the campaign of terror in 2022. Please do not copy or share this list without attribution.
As six additions to our 2021 list have been revealed in 2022, I am adding them in a separate list below to try and make any sense of this increasing horror. These folks deserve their lives and deaths to be honored and remembered. The complexity only underscores their realities.
- Amäriey Lèį (Myara) – Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania. January 1, 2022. Age 20.
- Duval Princess – Jacksonville, Florida. January 2, 2022. Age 24.
- Naomie Skinner – Detroit, Michigan, February 12, 2022. Age 25.
- Cypress Ramos – Lubbock, Texas, February 13, 2022. Age 21.
- Paloma Velasquez – Houston, Texas, February 26, 2022. Age 29.
- Matthew Spampinato – New Castle, Delaware, February 9, 2022. Age 21.
- Tatiana LaBelle – Chicago, Illinois, March 18, 2022. Age 33.
- Kathryn Newhouse – Canton, Georgia, March 19, 2022. Age 19.
- Kesha Webster – Jackson, Mississippi, March 26, 2022. Age 24.
- Miia Love Parker – Chester, Pennsylvania, April 1, 2022. Age 25.
- Ariyanna Mitchell – Hampton, Virginia, April 2, 2022. Age 17.
- Fern Feather – Morristown, Vermont, April 12, 2022. Age 29.
- Ray Muscat – Clarkston, Michigan, May 8, 2022. Age 24.
- Nedra Sequence Moss – Opa-locka, Florida, May 14, 2022. Age 50.
- Chanelika Y’Ella Dior Hemingway aka “Sid” – Albany, New York, May 31, 2022. Age 30.
- Sasha Mason – Zebulon, North Carolina, May 13, 2022. Age 45.
- Brazil Johnson – Milwaukee, Wisconsin, June 15, 2022. Age 28.
- Shawmayné Marie McClam – Gulfport, Mississippi, June 21, 2022. Age 27.
- Kitty Monroe – Memphis, Tennessee, June 29, 2022. Age unknown.
- Martasia Richmond – Chicago, Illinois, July 12, 2022, Age 30.
- Toi Davis – Milwaukee, Wisconsin, July 16, 2022. Age 34.
- Keshia Chanel Geter – Augusta, Georgia, July 20, 2022. Age 26.
- Cherry Bush – Sylmar, Los Angeles, California, July 6, 2022. Age 48.
- Hayden Davis – Detroit, Michigan, July 25, 2022. Age 28.
- Marisela Castro – Houston, Texas, July 29, 2022. Age 39.
- Dee Dee Kandii Redd – Kansas City, Missouri, July 24. Age 29.
- Maddie L. Hofmann – Malvern, Pennsylvania, May 19, 2022. Age 47.
- Jasper Aaron Lynch – McLean, Virginia, July 7, 2022. Age 26.
- Dede Ricks – Detroit, Michigan, August 27, 2022. Age 33.
- Regina Mya Allen – Milwaukee, Wisconsin, August 29, 2022. Age 35.
- Acey D. Morrison – Rapids City, South Dakota, August 21, 2022. Age 30.
- Semaj Billingslea – Jacksonville, Florida, September 21, 2022. Age 33.
- Tiffany Banks – Miami, Florida, October 1, 2022. Age 25.
- Ace Scott – Kansas City, Kansas, April 15, 2022. Age 15.