This Assault of a Transgender Teenager in Phoenix Was Recorded for Social Media
On August 16th, Dakota Kern of Phoenix, Arizona was invited to a pool party. Kern says she knew some of the people but there were a number of strangers. Unfortunately, the invitation may have been a trap. Shortly after Kern, who is trans, arrived, people started shouting gay slurs at her.
When she and two of her friends tried to leave the area, a man yelled “get it, get it.” That transphobic remark launched an attack by up to 20 people.
In an interview with KPHO, Phoenix’s CBS affiliate, Kern says one of the men grabbed her by her hair and hit her. She passed out and hit her head on the concrete.
Video of the assault was recorded by the attackers. The video was posted on social media. The video shows Kern thrown to the ground, surrounded by a number of people punching and kicking her.
A friend of Kern’s was able to extract her from the scene. Kern’s mother met her at the hospital and saw her daughter in a neck brace and hooked to monitors. Thankfully, Kern was not seriously injured — though she did suffer cuts and bruises.
Anti-LGBT hate crimes are on the rise. A recent study discovered that there have been more anti-LGBT murders in 2017 already than all of 2016. In 2017, there have been 33 such murders; in 2016, there were 28, though the study does not include the 2016 shooting at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub.
According to the study, in 2016, there was approximately one murder every 13 days. In 2017, however, that number has jumped to one in every six days.
To date in 2017, there have already been 17 trans people murdered in America. The most recent was Gwenevere River Song, who was shot to death on August 12th in Waxahachie, Texas.
Phoenix police are investigating Kern’s assault. No arrests have been made yet.
Photo courtesy of KPHO/CBS 5