Black trans woman found dead outside oil refinery and misgendered in death. Her name was Aidelen Evans
Aidelen Evans, a 24-year-old Black trans woman, was found dead in Texas earlier this month – but reports of her death were riddled by deadnaming.
Evans’ body was found by a canal running adjacent to Motiva, the nation’s largest oil refinery, in the coastal industrial city of Port Arthur by police on 18 March.
Police identified her on Thursday (25 March) but statements shared by the press continued to use her deadname and misgender her, Planet Transgender reported. The outlet noted it had only come to learn of Evans’ death Saturday (27 March) as a result.
Detectives at the Port Arthur Police Department are now urging members of the local community to call with any information about Evans.
What happened to Aidelen Evans?
Police said Aidelen Evans, who was homeless, had visited Port Arthur in passing and is understood to have come from Beaumont. She was known to frequent the area of College Street and 4th Street of the southeastern city.
Evans also had ties to Houston, police chiefs said, according to PA News.
Her cause of death is unknown at the time of writing, but cops have not ruled out foul play.
“As far as I know, if I’m not mistaken, we didn’t see anything on the scene to give us any direction on what type of incident occurred,” Port Arthur police chief Tim Duriso told the outlet.
“But we’re leaving everything open. We do not want to get tunnel vision, go down one route and should have kept a wide-open scope.”
“We are asking if anyone has any information on [Evans’] last whereabouts or who [she] might have been last seen with, to please contact the Port Arthur Police Department at 409-983-8600,” a department statement read.
“You can also contact Crime Stoppers of Southeast Texas at 833-TIPS. You do not have to give your name and could be eligible for a cash reward.”
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A vigil led by trans community leaders was set to be held Sunday evening (28 March) at Central Park in Evans’ hometown of Beaumont but was postponed due to the weather.
Even in death, trans people continue to experience relentless discrimination and disrespect, with deadnaming and misgendering of victims all too common.
By estimates of the Human Rights Campaign, a top LGBT+ advocacy group, around three-quarters of all known victims are misgendered by media and/or by law enforcement.
Not including Evans, HRC has already recorded 12 violent deaths of trans or gender nonconforming people in the US this year.
In less than three months, the community has mourned: Tyianna Alexandra, Samuel Edmund Damián Valentín, Bianca Bankz, Dominique Jackson, Fifty Bandz, Alexus Braxton, Chyna Carrillo, Jeffrey ‘JJ’ Bright and Jasmine Cannady, Jenna Franks, Diamond ‘Kyree’ Sanders and Rayanna Pardo.
The organisation warns that the number might be even higher, considering that trans victims are so often deadnamed and misgendered.
More: anti-trans violence