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Motorist Injures Marchers After Vigil for Trans Woman Killed by Police

Kiwi Herring
Kiwi Herring

Mourners who had attended a vigil for slain trans woman Kiwi Herring were marching through St. Louis streets when the driver hit three of them.

A motorist in St. Louis drove into a group of people marching Wednesday night after a vigil for a transgender woman killed by police, causing minor injuries to three.

The driver has been arrested, but his name has not been released, ABC News reports. Police followed him after he drove away, and he has been charged with felony fleeing.

The marchers had been attending a vigil for Kiwi Herring, a trans woman shot to death by police Tuesday, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports. Police had responded to a call that she had stabbed a neighbor, and when they confronted her, she stabbed one of the officers and was then shot. Both of the stabbing victims survived.

A relative said Herring, who was married and raising three children, had endured ongoing harassment from the neighbor. "The neighbor was homophobic and made fun of her," sister-in-law Crevonda Nance told HuffPost. "We couldn't understand why he was so angry and why he cared about Kiwi's sexual orientation." Nance also said police used excessive force against Herring and essentially "executed" her.

The vigil for Herring took place at the city's Transgender Memorial Garden. Afterward, attendees marched through nearby streets, holding candles. They were blocking an intersection, the Post-Dispatch reports, but most motorists drove around them onto side streets. Police and marchers gave differing accounts of the incident in which the driver hit three of them.

Police said the driver stopped, honked, and tried to go around the marchers, but some of them surrounded the car and began hitting it with their hands and a flag pole, and that three jumped onto it and were injured when they fell off as he drove away, the Post-Dispatch reports. Marchers Elizabeth Gombos and Keith Rose, however, told the paper the driver had his middle fingers raised and accelerated into the crowd.

"After we were already in front of the car, he made a point to stop, flip us off with both hands, and then he accelerated," Gombos said. "Once he hit people, that's when people lost it. Once people realized he was going to hurt people, they started to hit his car. I'm not going to deny they hit his car. They hit it with whatever they had ... fist, feet. They were trying to make him stop."

Herring is the 18th transgender American known to have died by violence this year.

[RELATED: These Are the Trans People Killed in 2017]

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