Los Angeles Police Investigate Attack On 3 Transgender Women As A Hate Crime

Cell phone videos appear to show a suspect physically assaulting the women, one of whom is YouTube star Eden the Doll, as bystanders look on.

The Los Angeles Police Department is investigating the filmed assault of three transgender women this week as a possible hate crime.

Widely circulated cell phone footage showed an unidentified man hurling anti-LGBTQ epithets at Joslyn Allen, Jaslene Busanet and Eden Estrada early Monday. Other clips appear to show the suspect threatening Allen with a crowbar and hitting Busanet with a bottle as a group of bystanders look on.

The three victims said their purses and phones, as well as pieces of jewelry and clothing, were stolen in the attack. Prior to the incident, they were waiting for an Uber on Hollywood Boulevard. 

Since Monday, news of the alleged attack made national headlines, much of it driven by the preeminence of the victims. Estrada is a popular YouTube personality who goes by the name Eden the Doll and boasts more than 440,000 Instagram followers.

Busanet is known as Jaslene White Rose, and Allen is known as Joslyn Flawless on social media, and together they have more than 174,000 Instagram followers. 

“It was absolutely the worst day of my life,” Estrada said in a Tuesday interview with CBSLA. “I know that I’m so privileged, because I am a YouTuber and because people know who I am, but this happens all the time to women like me who aren’t on social media. We need this to stop.”

Allen shared similar sentiments on Instagram. 

“He held a crowbar to my face and threatened to kill me unless I stripped my shoes off and gave him my jewelry and all my processions,” she wrote. “He said if I was trans, he would kill me. He then forced me to hold his hand while he looks for my friends to kill them for being trans.” 

The LAPD referred to the case as both a robbery and a hate crime on Twitter Wednesday. HuffPost reached out to the police for additional comment. 

“Pose” star Indya Moore and singer Zhavia Ward, meanwhile, shared images and video of the alleged attack on social media to raise awareness. 

News of the incident came amid a troubling spate of anti-transgender violence across the U.S. 

At least 26 transgender or gender-nonconforming people were killed by violent means in 2020, according to the Human Rights Campaign. Sadly, that figure seems poised to exceed 2017’s record of 29 such deaths.