Pauly Likens’ father speaks out after trans girl’s dismembered body discovered

The father of Pauly Likens has spoken out after the 14-year-old trans girl’s body was found near a lake in Pennsylvania. 

The body was found in the Golden Run Wildlife Area, in Sharpsville. Twenty-nine-year-old DaShawn Watkins has been charged Likens’ murder. 

Pauly’s father spoke out for the first time on Tuesday (9 June), saying “the world lost a little shine the day Pauly was taken from us”. 

Speaking to local news station 6ABC Philadelphia, Paul Likens said he had spent days searching the park, next to the Shenango river, where his daughter had reportedly last been seen.

Referring to Pauly using male pronouns, he went on: “I need to find out where my son passed from this world. I’ve always come through here, so I can be closer to Pauly.”

A mugshot of DaShawn Watkins.
DaShawn Watkins has been charged with the murder of trans 14-year-old Pauly Likens (Twitter/X)

Pauly Likens was last seen leaving a friend’s house at 9.30pm on 22 June, according to local police. Surveillance footage taken the following day shows Likens getting into a vehicle driven by a man alleged to be Watkins.

Police claim Watkins made several trips from his home on 24 June, carrying duffel and rubbish bags. The teenager was reported missing the following day, and their body was found less than 24 hours later.

In addition to first-degree murder, Watkins has been charged with aggravated assault, abuse of a corpse and tampering with or fabricating physical evidence.

According to reports, Pauly’s mother is “in complete and utter shock”, and is said to be pressuring authorities to charge Watkins with a hate crime.

Friends described Pauly as a “bright and loving individual, cherished by all who knew them”.

“Pauly was taken from us far too soon,” a GoFundMe, which reached more than $3,500 (£2,700) before being closed, reads. “Their life was filled with promise and potential and their untimely passing has left a void that can never be filled.”

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