The Ohio chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both grassroots networks of Everytown for Gun Safety, released the following statement today responding to reports that a 36-year-old Black transgender woman, Tierramarie Lewis, was shot and killed in Cleveland, Ohio on June 12. Reports indicate that Lewis was found shot and wounded in a residential area in Cleveland, and later succumbed to her injuries. Local officials initially misgendered and misnamed Lewis in reports, and her death was not reported until recently.
“Our hearts are with Tierramarie’s loved ones and friends,” said Liz Harmath, a volunteer with the Ohio chapter of Moms Demand Action. “This heartbreaking loss shows yet again the need for real change in addressing the gun violence crisis that disproportionaly impacts the transgender community. We will continue to work toward making our state safe from all gun violence.”
Tierramarie Lewis is at least the 33rd homicide death of a transgender or gender non-conforming person in 2021. So far in 2021, Everytown has tracked more violent deaths of transgender and gender non-conforming people than ever by this point in the calendar year.
Last year was the deadliest year on record for transgender and gender non-conforming people in the U.S., after 38 people were killed. Some trends from 2017 to 2020 that are likely to continue:
- Guns are the most frequently used weapon in the murder of trans people. Nearly three-fourths of trans people killed in America were killed with a gun.
- Black trans women account for the majority of homicide victims in the trans community. To put this into perspective, while Black people make up 16% of the trans population, 75% of known trans homicide victims between 2017 and 2020 were Black.
Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund has tracked homicides of transgender and gender non-comforming people in the U.S since 2017. In addition to breaking down gun violence to the state- and county-level, the EveryStat platform includes a database of known trans or gender non-conforming homicide victims in the United States. As the numbers show, violence against the trans community is closely linked to guns, and 2021 is on track to be the deadliest year on record.