Rashawn & Beyond: Anti-Violence News for Queer People of Color

The Rashawn Brazell Memorial Fund aims to establish a sustainable tribute to Rashawn that promotes critical thought about the impact of violence and intolerance, particularly upon queer communities of African descent.

Through this blog, we provide action alerts, event postings and breaking news as a means of informing these communities in ways that enable them to combat racism and homophobia.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Press Conference & Picket Line

White cops beat two Black men on November 1st in the West Village
Join activists from across the city for Anti-Police Brutality

Source: TransJustice
Point of Contact: Imani Henry
718-596-0342 ext 15 or ikhenry@alp.org

Press Conference & Picket Line
Wednesday, Nov 29th 6:30pm – 7:30pm
In front of the 6th Precinct
(233 West 10th Street)
To endorse or for more info call 718 596-0342 ext 15 or email

We Demand that The NYPD Stop Racist Police Brutality

Drop all the Charges against Shakur Trammel & his co-defendants FIRE
OFFICER TOCCOS! Release the names of all the officers involved in the
attack on November 1st End the NYPD campaign of Racial and Gender
Profiling Stop the attacks on youth, people of color, the homeless
and lesbian, gay, bi and trans people in the West Village.

What Happened at Hudson and Christopher – Halloween Night 2006
According to eyewitnesses, on November 1st, at around 4:30am, at the
intersection of Hudson and Christopher, various African-American and
Latina/o people were approached by a van of police officers and told
to move from the corner. Some of these people were patrons of a
pizza restaurant who were standing out in front, while others were
simply crossing the intersection.

As people began to move away from the corner, a 20-year old African-
American female remarked on how disrespectful the tone had been of
the female officer who had given the order. The same officer got out
of the van and began to initiate an argument with the 20-year-old
woman. Within seconds, Officer Toccos, a white male cop, also jumped
out of the van and began to shout at the 20-year-old female.

Then without warning or provocation, Officer Toccos pushed the 20-
year-old African-American woman twice in her breasts forcing her
backwards. A witness at the scene, 23 year old African-American
college student Shakur Trammel requested the badge number of Officer

In answer to that request, Shakur Trammel was punched in his face. In
a fit of rage, Toccos began punching Trammel repeatedly in his chest.
He soon threw him on top of the front of the police van and began
choking him with his nightstick. A rampage ensued. Witnesses report,
that between 4 to 6 cops, mostly white officers, began kicking and
punching, Shakur Trammel as he lay on the ground. Throughout the
attack, Officer Toccos continuously beat Trammel with his nightstick.
Covered with bruises and his left elbow dislocated Shakur Trammel was
then thrown into a police van.

During the attack, Trammel could hear the voices of several people
yelling for the police to stop and calling on each other to take
pictures to document the assault. As many as 20 people, the vast
majority of which were people of color, witnessed the attack. Eye
witnesses report that the police went into the crowd and began
beating another African–American man, believed to be in his 30's, who
was very vocal about his outrage at the police brutality wielded
against Trammel. Both men were arrested along with an African–
American female who refused to follow the police command for the
witnesses to disperse.

Once they arrived at the 6th Precinct, Shakur Trammel told his
arresting officer that he was a Transsexual male and wanted to be
placed in a separate cell. This request was ignored. Both of the
men, in desperate need of medical attention, were initially placed in
the same holding cell. Already in the cell were two other men, one
Black and one Latino, both injured and bleeding, who reported that
the police at the 6th Precinct also assaulted them. After an hour of
demanding to be taken to a hospital, one of the four men of color was
then taken from the cell by cops armed with a stun gun.

On November 1st 2006, at the corner of Hudson and Christopher, 2
Black men were beaten, one trans and one non-trans, and arrested
along with one Black woman, for refusing to stand idly by as a 20-
year old Black woman was assaulted by a white cop. Racist police
attacks like the one on November 1st are a daily occurrence in
working class and communities of color throughout NYC. In the West
Village, the 6th Precinct has become notorious for racist, sexist and
anti-lesbian, gay, bi and trans violence unleashed particularly
against young people of color, the homeless and transgender people.
The people of color LGBT youth organization, FIERCE!, has been at the
forefront of fighting on these issues in the West Village for several

TransJustice of The Audre Lorde Project calls on social justice
activists and organizations from across the city to Endorse and Come
to an Anti-Police Brutality Press Conference & Picket Line Wednesday,
Nov 29th 6:30pm – 7:30pm in front of the 6th Precinct (233 West 10th

TransJustice is a political group created by and for Trans and Gender
Non-Conforming people of color. We work to mobilize our communities
and allies to action on the pressing political issues we face. These
issues include gaining access to jobs, housing, and education; the
need for Trans-sensitive healthcare, HIV-related services, and job-
training programs; resisting police, government and anti-immigrant

To endorse or for more info call 718 596-0342 ext 15 or email

Monday, November 27, 2006

Forum targets anti-gay crime in ATL

Event slated for Wednesday evening at City Hall East
By RYAN LEE Nov 27, 2:45 PM

Following several recent episodes of alleged anti-gay violence in the city, the Atlanta Police Department and In the Life Atlanta are hosting a community forum on Nov. 29 to increase awareness about hate crimes and general safety for gay and lesbian residents.

Officer Darlene Harris, APD gay liaison, organized a Nov. 29 forum to raise safety awareness following two anti-gay attacks in Atlanta.

In the Life Atlanta representatives met with Officer Darlene Harris, the APD’s gay liaison, after two black gay men were beaten on Oct. 22 outside the GE Tower, which is located in a predominately black neighborhood just south of downtown Atlanta.

“With GE Towers essentially located within the African-American community, we felt the need to do something,” said Kenneth Jones, board president of In the Life Atlanta, a black gay group. “I think on a large scale, a lot of people do feel safe here in Atlanta, but that’s because a lot of these things aren’t reported.”

The forum will not focus exclusively on black gay men and lesbians, but instead aims to help all gay Atlantans stay safe, as well as educate them about how to recognize hate crimes and report them to Atlanta police. Jones credited Harris with taking the lead on organizing the forum, which includes a panel featuring Harris, along with representatives from the Human Rights Campaign and Lambda Legal Defense & Education Fund, two national gay rights groups.

James Carter and R’heem Turner reported that they were beaten outside the GE Tower during the early hours of Oct. 22. About five or six young men attacked Carter and Turner, and allegedly yelled out anti-gay slurs during the incident.

The Atlanta Police Department has not made any arrests in the incident, but continues to hope someone will come forward with information about the suspects, Harris said.

The GE Tower incident occurred during the same weekend as another anti-gay incident at The Heights at Cheshire Bridge apartment complex, where a gay man said he was pushed to the ground and called a faggot by a man with whom he had a parking dispute.

“Safety & Awareness in the LGBT Community”
Nov. 29, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Sherry Lyons auditorium, City Hall East
675 Ponce de Leon Ave.