A homeless trans woman has been murdered in Puerto Rico after using a female toilet at a McDonald’s.
Neulisa Luciano Ruiz, also known as Alexa, was reportedly targeted after her killers saw a social media post about her using the bathroom in Toa Baja.
There were pictures of the police responding to reports of Ms Ruiz ‘peeping on people’ in the bathroom, but officers found no proof, CBS News reports.
The complainant then chose not to pursue their accusations after being told Ms Ruiz was homeless
But her killers saw posts about the incident and decided to follow her in a car, before shooting her during Monday morning, while allegedly filming the attack on their phones.
Ms Ruiz was killed just nine hours after the accusations were made.
Puerto Rico Governor, Wanda Vázquez Garced, has said all aspects of the murder point to a hate crime.
In footage uploaded to social media, two men can be heard ridiculing and threatening a person thought to be Ms Ruiz.
One individual can then be heard misgendering her, saying: ‘You bet I am going to go and shoot him.’
Police are investigating whether the clip relates directly to the murder.
Once news of Ms Ruiz’s death broke, her name became trending on Twitter with the hashtags ‘#SeLlamabaAlexa’ and ‘She was called Alexa’.
Tori Cooper, director of community engagement for the transgender justice initiative for the Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBT+ advocacy group in the US, has condemned her death.
She continued: ‘This is a horrifying crime that must be investigated with the utmost thoroughness and care.
‘This victim, who has now been identified as Neulisa Luciano Ruiz, was a human being, a member of a community, a friend and family member.
‘She had dreams, hopes, hobbies and did not deserve to have her life taken from her.
‘Human Rights Campaign has heard that Ruiz was experiencing homelessness, further highlighting the ways a toxic mix of transphobia and misogyny conspire to put the transgender community at risk of extreme violence.’
Pedro Julio Serrano, founder of LGBTQ charity Puerto Rico Para Todas, told the Washington Blade: ‘We don’t know all the details yet, but she was harassed, hunted and brutally killed.
‘There’s no doubt that transphobia and intolerance had much to do in this case. Trans people are human beings that deserve to live with respect, peace and dignity.’
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