Her name was Kiesha Jenkins. She spent all of twenty-two years among us before being beaten and shot to death in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 6 October 2015:
Police say Pedro Redding, 22, of Hunting Park is under arrest for robbery and murder are closing in on his three alleged cohorts.
The charges stem from the robbery and killing of 22-year-old Kiesha Jenkins described by police as a transgender prostitute who was murdered last Tuesday at 13th and Wingohocking in the Hunting Park section.
Redding has told police he engaged in beating Jenkins, but someone else, he claims, shot her twice in the head during a struggle.
“The suspect gave a full statement to detectives that himself and three of his friends attempted to rob Kiesha and, during this robbery, one of the males pulled out a gun shooting and killing her,” Philadelphia Police Captain James Clark said.
Police say there is no evidence at this point that Jenkins was targeted because she was transgender, but rather because she was a known prostitute in that 13th and Wingohocking area and widely believed to be carrying plenty of cash.
“Our information is Pedro Redding and his associates live in the area and they know what goes on in that area. There are a lot of transgender individuals that frequent that area, so yes, they did know,” Clark said.
It should also be noted that the transgender are apparently preferred targets of the suspect, whose record includes a prior robbery of a transgender victim.
Kiesha Jenkins is the
nineteenth twentieth known transgender female murder victim this year. Please #SayHerName.
Update 17 October 2015: A note on the title ― This is one of those things I really should already know better; Kiesha Jenkins is the twentieth transgender female known to be murdered in 2015; the title of this post had previously counted her as the nineteenth. The confusion arises if we pause to consider whether or not to include Bri Golec in the count; despite Ms. Golic being transgendered, and this fact being at the heart of why her father is accused of murder, neither family nor local authorities will properly acknowledge the point. Given my own disagreement with this refusal, I really ought to know better. Ms. Jenkins was number twenty; number twenty-one, we learned last night, was named Zella Ziona, age 21, shot to death in Montgomery County, Maryland, on 15 October 2015. #SayHerName, please. Recite them all.
Image note: Kiesha Jenkins, 22, murdered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 6 October 2015.
Action News. “1 charged, 3 more sought in murder of Kiesha Jenkins”. WPVI. 12 October 2015.