Black trans woman Cashay B Henderson shot dead before home set ablaze: ‘She didn’t deserve what happened’

Police in Milwaukee, United States, are investigating the death of a Black trans woman, Cashay B Henderson, who was shot dead before her apartment was set on fire.

Henderson was found dead when emergency service officials arrived on the scene.

Local media outlet TMJ4 reported Milwaukee Police Department officers responded to reports of a fire at a home near 29th and Villard streets shortly before 10am on Sunday (26 February).

Police are investigating Henerson’s death as a homicide and are looking for unknown suspects, the outlet reported.

According to Fox 6 News Milwaukee, Henderson is the third Black trans woman killed in nine months.

Local LGBTQ+ group Diverse & Resilient posted on Facebook saying Cashay B Henderson was “a loved and valued member of our community”, adding: “Many of us are in mourning today.”

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The group said they were both filled with grief and anger, citing the risks of homicide Black trans woman face compared with other people.

“The continued attacks by right wing elected officials to remove safety and rights for trans people are causing an increase in vitriol and hatred toward people of trans experience.

“We call for an immediate halt to the hateful rhetoric and the dangerous bills that are written as a result of transphobia and lies,” the post stated.

Diverse & Resilient chief executive Christopher Allen told Fox 6 Henderson’s death only adds to the anxiety and vulnerability felt in the LGBTQ+ community every day.

He said it was important trans people were being affirmed and had safe spaces.

The group’s Facebook post said “many media sources” misgendered Cashay B Henderson, which was “a further act of violence” against her and “all people of trans experience”.

This was echoed by TMJ4, which reported there was confusion between the medical examiner’s officer and the police department on the victim’s gender.

A Gofundme page was set up by Henderson’s cousin, Veronica Beck, to raise money for funeral expenses.

Beck described Henderson as “a bubbly spirit with a down-to-earth, tell-it-like-it-is personality” who was “as beautiful as can be, inside and out”, adding: “Cashay didn’t deserve what happened to her.”

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