The New York City medical examiner has ruled that a transgender woman who died on May 4, nine days after being found unconscious and unresponsive in Chelsea, was the victim of a homicide.
The woman, Brenda Bostick, a 59-year-old resident of West 25th Street, was found on the street at 343 Seventh Avenue, between 29th and 30th Streets, at about 10:30 p.m. on April 25, at the time the apparent victim of head trauma. EMS transported her from the scene to Bellevue Hospital.
In an email statement on May 7, Julie Bolcer, a spokesperson for the city’s Office of Chief Medical Examiner, wrote, “The ME examined the decedent today. The cause of death is complications of blunt impact injury of head. The manner of death is homicide.”
The NYPD last week said an investigation is ongoing and no arrests have been made, and the department has announced no update on that status, only providing the woman's name, address, and age in a May 9 release.
At the time the woman’s death was announced, Corey Johnson, the out gay city councilmember who represents Chelsea, released a statement saying, “I am saddened and angered to learn that a transgender woman who was found by paramedics with head injuries in Chelsea has passed away. The NYPD assures me that a swift and thorough investigation is taking place to determine the cause of death. If criminality is involved, all resources must be deployed to apprehend the person or persons responsible. There must be zero tolerance for acts of violence, particularly against transgender individuals, who are disproportionately targeted by hate crimes and discrimination.”
Shelby Chestnut, director of community organizing and public advocacy at the New York City Anti-Violence Project, released a statement saying, “In these tragic moments we must remember it’s on all of New York to ensure we end violence against LGBTQ people, especially transgender women of color. Our city must be a welcoming place for everyone and we must look out for each other.”
People with information about the woman’s injuries can contact the NYPD at 800-577-8477 or in Spanish at 888-577-4782.