Earlier this month, Terrance “Jawan” Wight was shot at gunpoint when assailants tried to rob him in mid-afternoon near his high school, Banner Academy, witnesses who were in the area at the time reported that five individuals took place in the attack. The altercation resulted in Terrance’s death and the Chicago police are currently ruling Terrance’s death as a “robbery-turned-fatal-shooting.” However, the family does not accept that notion and has spoken out to highlight the bullying Terrance was subjected to.
On Monday, October 30, a 14-year-old was taken in by authorities and was charged with murder as a juvenile. A court date is scheduled for November 14.
However, in several media reports, the family states that Terrance was murdered due to his sexual orientation. The family has urged reporters to investigate this as a hate crime. Terrance’s aunt, Kathy Jackson, spoke with The Chicago Tribune, stating:
“Wright had been picked on at his previous high school because he was gay, which led him to transfer to Banner last year. He quickly made new friends, she said. "He had made a big turnaround from the old school to this one," Jackson said. "And now this happened."
After the assault, it was reported that nothing of value was found on the teen, which has outraged the family even further. His uncle, Tywan Bouldin, also spoke with media such as WGN-TV, stating that his nephew was “bullied inside and outside school.”
This case is truly disheartening. Furthermore, the recent arrest of a youth assailant is particularly alarming, which heightens the awareness that must continue in and out of our schools for LGBT youth. Terrance’s death occurred simultaneously on Spirit Day as LGBT youth and their supporters donned purple and spread global awareness about the significance and detriment that LGBT youth face in our nation.
GLAAD will continue to reach out the family in the wake of their devastation and monitor this story along with National Youth Pride Services. The Windy City Times posted that if anyone would like to remember Terrance Wright they may send their notes to firstname.lastname@example.org
Please keep Terrance Wright and his family in your thoughts.