A suspect in the murder of trans woman Tiffany Edwards in Cincinnati turned himself in to police on Wednesday morning. Quamar Edwards (no relation to the victim) was escorted by relatives to Cincinnati police headquarters to face charges for Tiffany's death.
Tiffany's body was found last Thursday by a city sanitation driver after she told her aunt the night before of plans to meet up with friends. Local police determined that Tiffany had been shot to death. The Buckeye Region Anti-Violence Organization (BRAVO) and Trans Ohio both released statements clarifying that Tiffany was a transgender woman after initial news stories misidentified her, and expressing concern that the shooting was hate-motivated.
Greg Mullins, Quamar's uncle, told local news station WLWT at the police station that he did not believe the violence was bias-motivated. However, he claimed that Tiffany was "trying to hit on" Quamar, and that his nephew "gets an attitude about that." This explanation is similar to "gay panic" or "trans panic" narratives where the victim is often blamed for their own death. Legal associations have discredited this defense tactic.
GLAAD will continue monitoring media coverage of this story and ensure that the "trans panic" defense does not go unchallenged in news reports. GLAAD has also created a guide specifically for journalists reporting on stories involving trans people who are victims of crime. If you see problematic media coverage of this story, please report it to GLAAD.