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Black Trans Woman A’nee Roberson Assaulted and Struck By Car Nearby LGBTQ+ Sports Bar in D.C

News & Opinion

(Source: Facebook, It'sA'nee Johnson)

A’nee Roberson of Northwest Washington, a 30-year-old Black transwoman, was assaulted and then killed near Nellie’s Sports Bar, a popular LGBTQ+ nightspot in Washington, DC.

According to a press release from the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia (MPDC), on Saturday, October 14, 2023 at approximately 4:20 a.m., District officers were alerted in front of the 900 block of U St for a person lying down in the roadway.

The officers were informed that Roberson was assaulted and then struck by an oncoming vehicle. She was taken to an area hospital where she was later pronounced dead.

“She was accosted by some individuals that assaulted her, which led to her running and ended ultimately to her getting hit by a car,” says Earline Budd of HIPS, a harm reduction advocacy organization based in Washington, DC.

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner conducted an autopsy and ruled the cause of death to be multiple blunt force injuries and the manner of death a homicide.

Investigators determined that the initial assault is the reason which caused her to end up in the roadway. The driver of the car, who was not involved in the assault, remained on the scene, and cooperated with police.

Police have not said why the assault may have taken place near Nellie’s since the sports bar closes at 3 a.m. on the weekends and 2 am on weekdays.

(Source: Facebook, It'sA'nee Johnson)

Detectives are working to identify the suspects who assaulted Roberson and also looking into the possibility of bias due to Roberson’s transgender identity. The police department’s special liaison branch, which handles bias crimes, says they will be investigating all aspects of the homicide.

The Office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia showed 129 offenses were investigated as potential bias crimes last year. Five resulted in prosecutions with enhanced penalties. One ended in federal hate crime charges and several are still pending.

The Metropolitan Police Department is currently offering a reward of up to $25,000 to anyone that provides information that leads to the arrest and conviction of those involved with the assault and murder of Roberson.

Roberson grew up in D.C and worked as a character escort with Six Flags of America and was also self-employed. She was known by friends and family as a positive and kind person.

“You lived, you laughed, and you learned. You were a given light into so many people’s lives…a whole new experience and perspective and it’s unfortunate the events that occurred. But every moment leading up was a pure blessing, just knowing and becoming familiar with your essence. We love you, miss you, and will never forget you. Rest in peace, our beloved” - Fifi Olarinde

(Source: Facebook, It'sA'nee Johnson)

Roberson’s murder occurred less than two weeks after Skylar Harrison, another Black transwoman, was found dead in Marvin Gaye Park in Northeast Washington, DC. A’nee Roberson is the 31st trans or gender nonconforming person whose death has been reported in 2023.

“Our blood is in the streets…We’re asking for the mayor, we’re asking for the police department to step up and take these crimes serious” - Iya Dammons, executive director of D.C Safe Haven

The D.C transgender and LGBTQ+ services organization Safe Haven announced a candlelight vigil will be held, “In Loving Memory of A’nee Roberson” at 5pm, Wednesday October 25th at 900 U St., N.W., the site where Roberson lost her life.

Rest in Power A’nee. We send our condolences to her friends, family, and anyone who has been affected by this tragedy.


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