A transgender woman was found gunned down on a Chicago street in a shocking Christmas day slaying, a national advocacy group said Wednesday.
Officers found a body near 900 E. 82nd Street, in the South Side neighborhood of Chatham, at about 8:35 p.m. on Friday with an "open wound to the left side" of the victim's head, police said in a statement.
The victim was pronounced dead at the scene.
Chicago authorities appeared to misgender the victim, as the Human Rights Campaign identified her as Courtney "Eshay" Key, a 25-year-old Black transgender woman.
"HRC has now tracked at least 43 deaths this year of transgender and gender non-conforming people," the LGBTQ advocacy group said in a statement. "We say 'at least' because too often these deaths go unreported — or misreported."
A police spokesman on Wednesday stopped short of calling this a hate crime and instead said: "At this time, the incident is being investigated as a death investigation."
Key is survived by her mother and two siblings, childhood friend Beverly Ross said.
Ross said that Key frequently faced harassment on the streets and didn’t hesitate to fight back.
“(Key) was a girl who was not going to take s--- from anybody,” Ross said.