Eight months ago, Tracy Single started to transition and live as her authentic self. At the end of July, she went missing in Houston.
This week, LGBTQ advocates count her as the 16th transgender homicide victim this year. She was just 22 years old. Monica Roberts, who is based in Houston, first reported Single’s death on her blog TransGriot.
“We’re now at a genocidal level,” Roberts tells NewNowNext. “Twelve of the 16 [killed] have been under the age of 30. They are literally killing our next generation of trans folks.”
The Houston Police Department confirmed Single’s death in a statement released to NewNowNext. Patrol officers responded to a call of a person lying in parking lot off the Katy Freeway at around 3:30am, police say.
“She had sustained a puncture wound and severe lacerations,” the statement reads.
Police do not yet have any leads on a suspect or motive in the crime.
Roberts says that it took two weeks to identify Single as a transgender victim because her family was still looking for her up until Sunday. Over the weekend, Local advocate Dee Dee Waters held a community town hall during which her family reported that Single was missing and police liaisons connected that Single was a deceased unknown person found weeks earlier, Roberts says.
Single, who also went by Tracy Williams, according to police, is the third transgender person slain in Texas this year alone. Muhlaysia Booker, 23, was killed May 18 in Dallas after surviving a brutal mob beating just weeks earlier. A week after Booker’s death, police pulled the body of 26-year-old Chynal Lindsey out of a lake. Police offered little details on the causes of their deaths, but said they showed signs of homicidal violence.
Single’s death comes at a time of epidemic-levels of violence against black transgender women nationwide. All but one of this year’s victims have been black trans women. The exception was a white transgender man who was murdered in the Dayton, Ohio, mass shooting earlier this month.
While 2019 initially started with low reports of violence against transgender people, hate incidents jumped dramatically during the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, according to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP). Between mid-May and mid-July, LGBTQ homicides tripled from the previous three months, averaging two per week.