Beating death of Harlem transgender woman Islan Nettles being investigated as a hate crime
"They were called f****, they were called he-she's, she males, things of that nature," her mother Delores Nettles said.
Police say one of the men was 20-year-old Paris Wilson, who they say punched Nettles, knocked her down, and wouldn't stop.
She was taken to Harlem Hospital with severe head trauma where she slipped into a coma and was pronounced brain dead Tuesday. ~ ABC Local
A spokeswoman for the New York City medical examiner’s office, Ellen Borakove, said on Friday that the death had been ruled a homicide and the cause was “blunt force trauma.”
ABC Local reports
Ms. Nettles, who, according to her LinkedIn page, was an intern assistant designer at Ay’Medici, a Harlem fashion company, was walking with a group of transgender friends on Frederick Douglass Boulevard between 147th and 148th Streets when they encountered several men across the street from the station house of Police Service Area 6, which patrols public housing developments in the area.
When the men concluded Ms. Nettles and her friends were transgender, a scuffle broke out, the police said, with punches thrown and homophobic slurs shouted.
The Police Department’s hate crimes task force is now investigating the case.
Prosecutors also said that more, and graver, charges could be filed against Mr. Wilson, who on Friday remained free on bail.