A New Jersey transgender woman died earlier this week after allegedly being attacked by a man living in her boarding house.
Eyricka Morgan, 26, reportedly died Sept. 24 at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick. Devonte Scott, 21, was arrested following Morgan’s death and charged with murder, unlawful possession of a weapon, and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, according to the Newark Star-Ledger.
Morgan, a former Rutgers University student, was featured in a 2011 article by the university highlighting queer individuals living in Newark, N.J. In the article, she discussed her family’s disapproval surrounding her gender identity. “I had to make a decision,” she said at the time. “Either I be myself or let others control me. So at 14 or 15, I packed up all my stuff and I left.’’
Transgender women of color experience disproportionate levels of hate violence compared to other members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community, facing challenges and struggles that are uniquely framed by the intersecting nature of their marginalized identity framework.
This summer alone, a number of transgender women of color — including Islan Nettles, Diamond Williams, and Domonique Newman — were allegedly murdered in disturbingly violent ways.
For more information on the lived reality of violence against transgender women of color in our society, watch this stirring music video by the artist KOKUMO and visit the National Center For Transgender Equality website.
Morgan’s murder remains under investigation by the New Brunswick Police Department.