The body of 27-year-old Dominique Rem'mie Fells was found Monday evening floating near Bartram's Garden in Southwest Philadelphia. Fells, a black transgender woman, suffered trauma to her face and head, and both of her legs were severed mid-thigh, according to Philadelphia Police Chief Inspector Scott Small.
Police confirmed Fells' identity to NBC10 on Friday after the city's Office of LGBT Affairs released a statement the day before. A law enforcement source told NBC10 that dive teams found legs in bags in the same area where her body was found. The legs of the body were located as authorities conducted an unrelated search for the bodies of two teens, to whom went missing in the Schuykill river this week. In its statement, the office of LGBT Affairs called the killing of trans people of color an epidemic:
“We are reminded with this, and countless other painful losses—especially within our transgender communities—that there is much left to do until we achieve full equality, respect, and support for us all.
The statement continued, “The murder of transgender people—especially those of color—is truly an epidemic, and a crisis that we cannot afford to allow to persist any further," the statement read in part.
HRC President Alphonso David shared, “This week, two Black transgender women were killed. This horrifying news comes the same week that we remember the 49 people gunned down at Pulse in Orlando, as millions continue to take to the streets to declare ‘Black Lives Matter,’ and as a billionaire author with a gigantic megaphone continues to spout off transphobic propaganda to her millions of followers.”
As education and creditable information circulate, raising awareness to the Black Lives Movements—queer and black lives are still targeted and senselessly murdered. All Black Lives Matters— Queer, Trans, Non-binary and all those “under the rainbow.”
Anyone with information about Fells death is asked to call the Philadelphia police tip-line at 215-686-TIPS or to contact the office of LGBT Affairs.