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Black transgender woman Starr Brown shot to death in Memphis. Her coworker has confessed to the killing

Alexander Williamson Starr Brown Murder
Human Rights Campaign

Brown was gunned down and left to die in her car by a coworker, according to police.

Starr Brown, a Black transgender woman, was shot and killed in Tennessee last month, and a coworker has reportedly confessed to the crime.

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Police in Memphis say Brown was murdered in the early morning hours of April 19 after she finished her work shift at Checkers, a drive-thru fast-food establishment, according to local CBS affiliate WREG. She was seen on video driving away in her Pontiac G3 with coworker Alexander Williamson, 20, just after 2:30 a.m. Brown’s body was discovered in her car several hours later in a wooded area on Rolling Woods Drive. She suffered a single gunshot wound to her left side.

On April 28, Williamson voluntarily walked into a police station and confessed to the crime, local Fox affiliate WHBQ-TV reported. He reportedly gave a full confession, but police provided no information about a possible motive or why he decided to confess.

Alexander Williamson Starr Brown deathAlexander WilliamsonShelby County Sheriff's Office

Brown is the 11th known trans individual to die violently this year and the second known Black trans woman to be killed, according to the Human Rights Campaign.

Jasmine Tasaki, founder of WeCare Tennesse which supports trans women of color in the state, decried violence against Black trans women and called for greater efforts on behalf of the trans community.

“It saddens me that we are living in a time where black transwomen are murdered with no outrage,” Tasaki said in a statement. “Our community continues to suffer, yet we find ways to go on. It is with deep hurt that I say Starr Brown’s name. She is now with the ancestors and can rest. It’s our duty to push harder for liberation for our people; we can only save ourselves.”

Brown was a victim of violence last year when shot while waiting for an Uber after work on October 18. She was accosted by two men around 3 a.m. She was able to use mace on the man with a gun, but he wiped his face and shot her in the leg. She later told local ABC affiliate WATN-TV she felt lucky that the man didn’t shoot her in the back as she fled.

This is not the first time Williamson has been charged with murder. He was arrested in 2022 along with his brothers Artavious, 23, and Ajaylin. 22, for the shooting death of a man who had been in an earlier dispute with Artvavious. He reportedly returned with his brothers to the man’s Memphis home where he shot and killed him after challenging him to a fist fight, WHBQ-TV reported at the time. Williamson, then 19, was charged with second-degree murder.

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