Nationally known performer Chyna Doll Dupree has become the fifth transgender person reported murdered in 2017.
Dupree was shot to death Saturday night near a shopping center in New Orleans, The Times-Picayune reports. Neighbors reported hearing eight to 10 gunshots.
Dupree, who was also known as Chyna Gibson, was a drag performer who identified as a transgender woman, the paper notes. She had been living in California but returned to her former hometown of New Orleans to celebrate Mardi Gras with friends and relatives. She had toured in drag shows across the nation and was famous in the pageant and ball scene.
“She was just a really good person,” a friend told The Times-Picayune. “Everyone loved her.”
The police have not made a statement on a suspect or motive, or whether they consider Dupree’s death a hate crime, local TV station WWL reports. Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (504) 822-1111.
Last year was the deadliest year on record for transgender Americans, with 27 homicides reported. Most of the victims were trans women of color. The actual number killed in any given year is likely much higher, as some victims are misgendered in death or their deaths not reported to media.